News / Africa

US, Togo Discuss Syria, Boko Haram

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, right, meets with Togo President Faure Gnassingbe, center, and opposition leader Gilchrist Olympio at the Presidential Palace in Lome, Togo, Tuesday Jan. 17, 2012.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, right, meets with Togo President Faure Gnassingbe, center, and opposition leader Gilchrist Olympio at the Presidential Palace in Lome, Togo, Tuesday Jan. 17, 2012.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Tuesday discussed the deteriorating security situation in Syria and terrorist attacks in Nigeria with Togolese President Faure Gnassingbe, whose country holds a seat on the United Nations Security Council.  

It was an elaborate welcome for Secretary Clinton outside Lome's presidential palace, where she met for nearly an hour with President .

A senior State Department official says they discussed a variety of issues before the U.N. Security Council including Syria, Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo. On Syria, Secretary Clinton expressed U.S. support for Arab League efforts to end government attacks against opponents. President Gnassingbe said he is "uncomfortable" with what is going on in Syria.

The Togolese leader reaffirmed his support for direct negotiations between Israeli and Palestinian officials, having abstained from the UNESCO vote that gave Palestinians full membership in the educational, scientific and cultural organization.

Because of Togo's former isolation from the international community under the president's father, long-time ruler Gnassingbe Eyadema, many of these international issues are new for the small West African nation.

President Gnassingbe told Secretary Clinton that Togo's isolation is over and that the country is looking to play a bigger role in the African Union and the Economic Community of West African States.  He said her visit, the first ever by a U.S. secretary of state, gives them confidence that they are on the right path.

Secretary Clinton and President Gnassingbe discussed their joint concern over attacks by the Muslim fundamentalist group Boko Haram, which is targeting Christians and security forces in northern Nigeria.  Boko Haram's threat to regional stability was also part of talks earlier in the day between Secretary Clinton and Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara, who is taking a more active role in the regional ECOWAS alliance.

In Togo, Clinton encouraged President Gnassingbe to continue working with political opponents on legislative reforms, fighting corruption and drug trafficking, and making it easier for foreign investors to do business.

President Gnassingbe said his government is committed to democratic reforms and strengthening human rights.  He said he is working to meet standards of fiscal reform and domestic investment in health care and education that are prerequisites for assistance through the U.S. Millennium Challenge Corporation.

Secretary Clinton told staff at the U.S. embassy in Lome that Togo has distinguished itself in recent years by supplying hundreds of peacekeepers for missions around the world, including in Ivory Coast.  She said Togo's election to the U.N. Security Council signals a “new era of global engagement and leadership” for the country.

You May Like

Ebola Death Toll Nears 5,000 as Virus Advances

West Africa bears heaviest burden; Mali toddler’s death raises new fears More

Jordan’s Battle With Islamic State Militants Carries Domestic Risks

Despite Western concerns that IS militants are preparing a Jordanian offensive, analysts call the kingdom's solid intel a strong deterrent More

Asian-Americans Assume Office in Record Numbers

Steadily deepening engagement in local politics pays off for politicians like Chinese-American Judy Chu More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Comanche Chief Quanah Parker’s Century-Old House Falling Apart

One of the most fascinating people in U.S. history was Quanah Parker, the last chief of the American Indian tribe, the Comanche. He was the son of a Comanche warrior and a white woman who had been captured by the Indians. Parker was a fierce warrior until 1875 when he led his people to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and took on a new, peaceful life. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Cache, Oklahoma, Quanah’s image remains strong among his people, but part of his heritage is in danger of disappearing.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid