Travel Diary: Secretary Clinton Emphasizes U.S. Focus on Democratization in Africa

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
January 17, 2012
Secretary Clinton Participates in a Roundtable Discussion in Cote d'Ivoire

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Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton traveled to Liberia, Cote d'Ivoire, Togo, and Cape Verde on January 16-17, 2012, to demonstrate U.S. commitment to post-conflict return to peace, good governance, and economic development as well as to emphasize U.S. focus on democratization.

In Liberia, Secretary Clinton attended President Sirleaf's inauguration and presided over the in-house dedication of the new U.S. embassy compound to demonstrate America's commitment to an enduring friendship with the people of Liberia, as well as the importance of our bilateral relationship with the Liberian Government. At the ribbon-cutting ceremony, Secretary Clinton was joined by U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Liberia Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, and Liberian Foreign Affairs Minister Toga Gayewea McIntosh, among others. Secretary Clinton said, "This new compound is a testament to the work you do, and it is a symbol of America's lasting commitment to our partners today. We are committed to standing with the people of Liberia as you, as they, continue their important journey, reconciling political and ethnic differences, strengthening democracy, bringing prosperity and opportunity to people, particularly young people."

While in Cote d'Ivoire, Secretary Clinton met with Ivoirian President Alassane Ouattara to express admiration for the progress that your country is making -- a steady and hopeful return to peace and security, reconciliation among all the people of the nation, as well as economic and social development. Secretary Clinton said, "I am inspired by how quickly not only the government but the people have moved from the violence and conflict of last spring to successful legislative elections in December and to a commitment that is in the air to build a better future for all Ivoirians and particularly for the next generation." In Abidjan, Secretary Clinton also participated in a Youth and Community Leaders Reconciliation Roundtable.

In the first visit of a Secretary of State to Togo, Secretary Clinton met President Faure to demonstrate U.S. support for Togo's democratic progress and economic reforms and to congratulate Togo on its recent election to the United Nations Security Council, where it holds a non-permanent seat for 2012 and 2013.

In Cape Verde, Secretary Clinton met Prime Minister Neves to discuss cooperation on regional issues like counternarcotics, good governance, sound economic policies, and Cape Verde's second Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Compact.

You can read more about the Secretary's travel on www.state.gov.

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