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Bush Arrives in Tanzania

President Bush is in Tanzania on the second stop of a five-nation tour of Africa. VOA White House Correspondent Scott Stearns has the story.

President Bush was greeted at the airport in Dar es Salaam by Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete and by groups dancing and drumming to traditional Tanzanian music. 

President Kikwete is the new chairman of the African Union.  So his Sunday meeting with President Bush at Dar es Salaam's State House is sure to focus on more than just Tanzania.

U.S. officials say the leaders are expected to discuss the rebellion in Chad, the continuing economic decline in Zimbabwe, and the political crisis in Kenya following December's disputed elections.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice travels to Kenya on Monday to stress the president's desire for a power-sharing deal and an end to ethnic violence that has killed over 1,000 people and displaced 300,000 more.

While Mr. Bush hopes the trip focuses most on efforts to boost economic development and fight HIV/AIDS and malaria, there will be no escaping conflict, including the violence in Sudan's troubled Darfur region, Somalia, and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Jennifer Cooke is co-director of the Africa program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a private policy research group in Washington.

"I think it's going to be a fairly upbeat trip; I think that's the hope," she said.  "There is, however, there are many crises roiling on the continent that will certainly come up, Somalia being one of them; Kenya, continuing conflict in DRC, Darfur; Zimbabwe which, in the last trip that Bush took, he called upon President Mbeki to be kind of the good-faith negotiator between the parties in Zimbabwe.  We have not seen a lot of progress on that, and that may come back to haunt him in this particular trip."

President Bush says he is disappointed that South African President Thabo Mbeki has not been able to do more to resolve Zimbabwe's political crisis.

Speaking in Benin before his arrival in Tanzania, President Bush said resolving African conflict is certainly part of his trip, but progress toward improving literacy and health care should not be forgotten.

"This is a large place with a lot of nations, and no question not everything is perfect," he said.  "On the other hand, there are a lot of great success stories, and the United States is please to be involved with those success stories."

While in Tanzania, President Bush will visit a U.S. funded AIDS clinic and meet with survivors and family members of victims of the 1998 U.S. Embassy bombing that killed 11 Tanzanians.

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