US Secretary of State Antony Blinken to undertake diplomatic trip to Africa in August

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United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken will be travelling to three African countries during August. This was announced by his office in a media statement released this week.

The Secretary will launch the US Strategy for Sub-Saharan Africa, which reinforces the US view that African countries are geo-strategic players and critical partners on the most pressing global issues, including promoting an open and stable international system, tackling the effects of climate change, food insecurity, global pandemic, as well as shaping our technological and economic futures.

Blinken will be travelling to South Africa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda between 7-11 August 2022:

He will be in the South African capital, Pretoria, from 7 August where he will be leading a US delegation to the US-South Africa Strategic Dialogue in order to reinforce and deepen the United States’ commitment to bilateral cooperation on global issues as well as a wide range of shared priorities, including health, infrastructure, trade and investment, and climate. While here he will also be joining in the country’s Women’s Day celebrations.

The American Secretary of State will then visit the Democratic Republic of the Congo and have meetings with senior government officials and members of civil society to discuss the central African nation’s 2023 elections, as well as a way forward to ensuring that they are free, inclusive and fair. Also on his agenda in the DRC will be combating corruption, supporting trade and investment, addressing the climate crisis, building agricultural resilience, and support regional African efforts to advance peace in the eastern DRC which recently had spates of political violence at its border with Rwandan forces.

The final stop on his diplomatic trip of Africa will be Rwanda where peacekeeping will be at the top of the agenda focusing on the east African nation’s role in reducing tensions and ongoing violence in eastern DRC.

He will also address concerns relating to democracy and human rights concerns, mainly transnational repression, limiting space for dissent and political opposition, and the wrongful detention of U.S. lawful permanent resident Paul Rusesabagina.