07 de marzo de 2018, 17:33Addis Ababa, Mar 7 (Prensa Latina) US State Secretary Rex Tillerson was welcomed today by Ethiopian Foreign Minister Workneh Gebeyehu in the first stop of his official visit to Africa. Prior to his arrival in Ethiopia, the White House reported that the tour had been oriented to foster cooperation and mutual respect, based on understanding.
Tillerson is the topmost diplomat from the United States to visit Africa after the election of President Donald Trump. She also said that the Secretary would be discussing how the United States "can work with our partners to counter terrorism, advance peace and security, promote good governance, and spur mutually beneficial trade and investment".
Yamamoto said Godec is among the most senior American diplomats serving in Africa and that he stands as "a model of leadership and engagement".
He will spend about a week on the continent visiting countries that play key roles in addressing Africa's security challenges, including Nigeria, Chad and Djibouti, which houses the only permanent USA military base in Africa.
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Tillerson will also visit Djibouti, a tiny but strategically important ally in the Horn of Africa where the authoritarian leader, Ismail Omar Guelleh, has been in power since 1999, after taking over from his uncle; and Kenya, which is also fighting al-Shabab in Somalia.
In addition, the U.S.is also very concerned about the recent ethnic fighting between Oromo and Somali ethnic groups that has displaced almost one million people, and the subject is certain to come up during the meeting. "And the Chinese have understood it and have been more proactive and aggressive in a way that it's benefiting them", Brahima Coulibaly, the director of the Africa Growth Initiative at Brookings Institution, said, commenting on the trip.
Critics argue that the Trump administration's neglect of Africa and narrow focus leaves it increasingly irrelevant to African leaders.
For Tillerson, who did not visit Africa during his first year as the top USA diplomat, it may be that the best way to show deference to a continent suspicious of Trump is to listen.
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The department said over two decades ago, the number of countries in Africa with really democratically elected government were really very few - only three or four. No assistant secretary for Africa has been named. Djibouti is the site of the only USA base in Africa.
Tillerson will also visit Kenya, where the political system is in turmoil over disputes related to President Uhuru Kenyatta's re-election.
Though he has yet to visit as diplomat, Tillerson is not a stranger to Africa, which he visited frequently in search of deals in his previous job as CEO of Exxon Mobil. However, since the beginning of President Trump's tenure, trade tariffs have shown little trade and investment interest in Africa; the president, has so far been consistent with the "America First" economic agenda. The energy behemoth has significant business dealings in sub-Saharan Africa, including in Chad, Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea.
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