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Clinton Heads To Kenya As Africa Visit Begins

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton kicked off a seven country, 11-day trip — “her longest overseas journey to date as the top U.S. diplomat — by flying Monday night to Kenya where she will address an African trade and development forum, meet top Kenyan officials and see the beleaguered president of lawless Somalia’s interim government,” the Associated Press reports. During the trip, Clinton is expected to “underscore the importance of efforts to combat HIV/AIDS and pledge continuing U.S. backing for health care initiatives in Africa,” the AP writes (Lee, 8/3).

Clinton will also address food security in Africa, according to VOA News. “Africa relies on foreign aid to feed itself,” said George Ayittey, an economist. “For Africa to move forward, it needs to produce enough food to feed itself and that is where the focus by Clinton would be extremely helpful,” he said (Block, 8/4).

Sky News reports that Clinton is “expected to reiterate the policy objectives laid out by President Obama during his brief visit to Ghana last month,” which include an increase in U.S. aid for the continent, but also the need for good governance in Africa (Hurd, 8/4). Johnnie Carson – the “top U.S official for Africa,” who is traveling with Clinton — said, “The United States is desirous of having a broad-based relationship with the continent — that it’s not simply interested in providing aid but also

opening up and encouraging business opportunities,” VOA News writes (8/4).

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, where “massive rape” has been committed during the 15-years of civil strife, “Clinton will meet with some of the victims of that violence to underscore the United States’ commitment ending gender-based violence,” CNN reports. Clinton will also visit South Africa, Nigeria, Angola, Liberia and Cape Verde (Dougherty, 8/3).

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