News / Africa

Obama Africa Trip is Effort to Re-engage With Continent

Obama Africa Trip Is Effort to Re-engage With Continenti
X
June 19, 2013 9:38 PM
U.S. President Barack Obama returns to Africa next week, only the second visit of his presidency to the continent. VOA senior White House correspondent Dan Robinson reports that in Senegal, South Africa and Tanzania, he will stress support for democracies and economic progress, and he will speak about the importance of human rights.

Obama Africa Trip Is Effort to Re-engage With Continent

U.S. President Barack Obama returns to Africa next week, only the second visit of his presidency to the continent. In Senegal, South Africa and Tanzania, he will stress support for democracies and economic progress, and speak about the importance of human rights.

Obama has spent less than 24 hours in sub-Saharan Africa, an all-too short visit to Ghana in 2009.

He spoke to Ghana's parliament about democracy, opportunity and peaceful resolution of conflict, and pointed to what he called a fundamental truth.

“Development depends on good governance," he stated. "That is the ingredient which has been missing in far too many places, for far too long. That's the change that can unlock Africa's potential."

In Senegal, Obama's first stop, his host is President Macky Sall, who visited the White House last March with other African leaders.

Senegal and other stops reflect U.S. support for emerging democracies, food security, global health and fighting AIDS.

Obama also is likely to speak about joint counter-terrorism efforts with African nations, and threats from Islamist extremists in places like Mali and Nigeria.

Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes said President Obama is aware of the disappointment that he has visited Africa only once, and is determined to change that.

"The U.S. would be ceding its leadership position in the world if the president of the United States was not deeply engaged in Africa," Rhodes noted. "And that is what he is going to do."

Former Bush administration top official for Africa Jendayi Frazer, now with the Council on Foreign Relations, said the African "street" and many leaders feel let down. "That he hasn't been more engaged, that he hasn't had more dialogue with them, and that his administration has not had greater influence, particularly when they compare that to the significant engagement that they are finding coming out of China," Frazer stated.

Julius Agbor, with the Brookings Institution, credits Obama with strengthening democratic institutions, peace and security initiatives, and food security initiatives.

He said Obama bolstered U.S. aid levels, but Africans remain disappointed with low levels of direct U.S. investment.

"Africans in the majority have been very disappointed by the fact that the U.S. is not investing enough in the continent which would have helped to provide jobs for its millions of unemployed young graduates," said Agbor.

In South Africa, which White House officials call the continent's iconic democracy, Obama will discuss economic and democratic progress. 

"South Africa is the largest economy in sub-Saharan Africa, it has strong democratic institutions although challenged, certainly there are major challenges in South Africa, but it is of strategic importance to the United States, it has a big influence in the African Union and across the region, particularly in southern Africa," added Frazer.

Deliberately left off Obama's itinerary was Kenya. Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta and deputy president face trials in the International Criminal Court on charges linked to post-election violence in 2007.

You May Like

Scotland Vote Raises Questions of International Law

Experts say self-determination, as defined and protected by international law, confined narrowly to independence movements in process of de-colonization More

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

Conservationists hail ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015 More

Annual Military Exercise Takes on New Meaning for Ukraine Troops

Troops from 15 nations participating in annual event, 'Rapid Trident' in western Ukraine More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Rob from: FLA USA
June 20, 2013 11:44 PM
This is a a vacation for Obama and Family ...plain and simple!


by: Gadema Quoquoi from: New YYork City
June 20, 2013 11:18 AM
I hear some people in the USA complianting about President Obama's African Trip that, may cost $60-100 million of tax payers dollars.

Afirca has over 320 million Middle Calss, more the India. Africa is the second largest Continent, and the richest in Natural Resources. This means, Africa offers more business opportunities to American businesses than any ohter Continent.

Which, I believe will translate into more American JOBS.

As a Liberian and a Global Expert in Infrastructure Development, I believe Africa is the next Economic Miracle. My cncern is will this translate into moore business opportunities Africans, African-Americans, Caribbean-Africans, etc,

Gadema Quoquoi
Presidentg & CEO
COMPULINE INTERNATIONAL, INC.


by: Nandos
June 19, 2013 11:36 PM
Jendayi Frazer "Many African leaders feel let down, that he hasnt been more engaged, that he hasnt had more dialogue with them etc. Well what about mentioning Humanitarian transgressions on a scale that is absolutely unknown in Western Countries and is ongoing? Please Jendayi visit a few of these Southern African countries, and research what has been happening. Nkosi sikele Afrika.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctionsi
X
September 18, 2014 2:28 AM
A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid