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Bush and Rwandan President Meet at White House


President Bush says he is confident U.S. lawmakers will approve funding to help reimburse African nations that have peacekeeping forces in Sudan's troubled Darfur region. Mr. Bush met in the Oval Office with Rwandan President Paul Kagame.

President Bush says President Kagame is a man of action who gets things done both at home and abroad.

President Bush says they discussed Rwanda's role in African Union peacekeeping efforts in Darfur, where at least 180,000 people have been killed and two million displaced in three years of violence.

"I want to thank the president for committing troops in the AU mission to help deal with what I have called a genocide," he said. "We strategized about how we can go forward to resolve this situation. I thank you for your wisdom. I thank you for your concern."

President Kagame thanked President Bush for helping Rwandan troops get to Sudan and said his government is committed to ending that violence.

"With your support, Mr. President, we have had our troops airlifted by United States military to Darfur and we continue to support the African Union mission," he said.

President Bush says President Kagame expressed concern about whether Washington would honor its commitment to help pay for the African Union force. Mr. Bush told the Rwandan leader that he is confident U.S. lawmakers will pass supplemental funding that includes money to reimburse nations with troops in Darfur, including Rwanda.

President Kagame is a former rebel leader who came to power in a war that ended Rwanda's 1994 genocide. Ethnic Hutu extremists killed an estimated 800,000 people, including ethnic Tutsi and politically moderate Hutu.

President Bush praised Rwanda's efforts to recover from the violence and vowed to help track down those still at large.

"Your president and his government have worked hard to help people reconcile the tragedy at all levels of society," he said. "To the extent that he wants our help in finding certain perpetuators of crime, we will be glad to do so. But the way I look at the situation, Rwanda can serve as an example for other societies that are troubled."

President Bush says Washington is working hard to reconcile political and ethnic differences in Iraq and said President Kagame offered to help with those efforts.

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