US Deputy Secretary of State on official visit to Tonga

A senior official of the US administration is visiting Tonga to commemorate 50 years of bilateral relations between the United States and the Kingdom.

Deputy Secretary of State, Wendy Sherman, visited Eua Island today for a royal audience with King Tupou VI.

On arrival in Nuku’alofa, Sherman was greeted by Fekitamoeloa Katoa 'Utoikamanu, Minister for Foreign Affairs & Tourism, and Dr. Saia Piukala, Minister for Health at the VIP Lounge of the Fua'amotu International Airport.

A statement said The Deputy Secretary will discuss bilateral cooperation, including the United States’ interest in beginning discussions to establish a U.S. embassy in Tonga—announced by Vice President Kamala Harris at the Pacific Islands Forum in July—as well as ongoing recovery efforts from the volcano eruption and tsunami in January, for which the United States has provided over $2.6 million in assistance.

She will also deliver remarks at an event with Tongan students and young people, meet with members of Tongan civil society, and visit U.S. Peace Corps staff.

The Peace Corps has been active in Tonga for 55 years and will return volunteers to the field in 2023.


Photo MOFA  Caption:  Fekitamoeloa Katoa 'Utoikamanu, Minister for Foreign Affairs & Tourism (left) and US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman