The former US ambassador to Japan and daughter of famed US president JFK has arrived in Australia to begin her new role in Canberra.
Ms Kennedy touched down in Sydney and addressed the media this morning saying she’s looking forward to expanding the partnership between Australia and the US.
“Everybody is so excited about working together on the quad and in the Pacific, so there’s a big agenda”
“I think the US-Australia partnership is really my focus and the work that we do together in the region, security, economic engagement, climate change, health security, all of those things.”
She went onto say that Australia “is a critical area” in the Pacific and that the re-introduction of several US embassies, peace corps and US aid will help the US “to do more”.
It was also mentioned by Ms Kennedy that a close-working relationship will “make a big impact” and when asked whether China’s presence in the Pacific is a concern said she is more focused on Australia-US relations.
An introduction video was released on Wednesday in which she expressed how excited she was to be coming to Australia, citing the long history between the two countries.
She also shared a personal experience of how an Australian saved her father, John F Kennedy in World War II.
“In 1943, my father’s PT boat was sunk by a Japanese destroyer, if not for the help of two Solomon Islanders and an Australian coast watcher he and his crew would not have survived.
“He wanted to be the first sitting president to visit Australia, so I’m honoured to carry his legacy forward in my own small way.”
Ms Kennedy also mentioned that her honeymoon with husband Edwin Schlossberg was spent in Australia, and they always dreamt of coming back, even bringing their children in 2014.
The US ambassador said that she can’t wait to learn more about the Australia culture including the First Nations people, sports, and snacks.