President Donald Trump mentioned the United States “deeply respects” Africans and can dispatch its prime diplomat to the continent, in a letter to African leaders.
The AFP reported that the letter was despatched final week to the AU, whose leaders are holding a summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
In a appeal offensive, Trump had earlier in a gathering with Rwanda chief, Paul Kagame, in Davos, Switzerland, despatched ‘his warmest regards’, to AU leaders.
The letter got here after Trump provoked a firestorm of indignation amongst African nations earlier in January when he reportedly referred to as them “shithole countries” throughout a gathering with lawmakers in Washington.
While Trump has denied the comment, the 55 member states of the African Union are anticipated to formally condemned it in the course of the summit.
“I want to underscore that the United States deeply respects the people of Africa, and my commitment to strong and respectful relationships with African nations as sovereign nations is firm,” Trump wrote within the letter.
“Our soldiers are fighting side-by-side to defeat terrorists,” he mentioned, and “we are working together to increase free, fair and reciprocal trade.”
The letter was not made public, however its existence was confirmed by Chris Meade, a diplomat with the US delegation to the AU.
Meade declined to touch upon its contents, however an AU supply confirmed the accuracy of the textual content of the letter circulating on social media.
Earlier this month media studies emerged of Trump demanding to know throughout a gathering on immigration reform why the United States ought to settle for residents from “shithole countries”, together with Haiti, El Salvador and the complete African continent.
Trump defended himself on Twitter, saying: “The language used by me… was tough, but this was not the language used.”
In the letter, Trump doesn’t acknowledge the reported feedback, however mentioned Secretary of State Rex Tillerson would make a “extended visit” in March. He informed African leaders that he appears to be like ahead to “welcoming many of you to the White House.”