(The Daily Nation) — US President Barack Obama will in late July become the first sitting American leader to visit Ethiopia and the headquarters of the African Union, the White House said Friday.
Obama’s trip to Addis Ababa will come directly after an already announced trip to Kenya, his first as president to his father’s homeland, press secretary Josh Earnest announced.
Obama will meet both the Ethiopian government and AU leaders, for talks on how to “accelerate economic growth, strengthen democratic institutions and improve security.”
The election of the United States’ first black president — and the first with an African parent — raised high hopes on the continent, but Obama has been a cautious friend.
In August last year, the White House hosted a huge Washington summit of African leaders and the upcoming July trip is intended to build on progress towards closer economic ties.