Deputy Secretary of State Burns to Travel to Africa January 26-30, 2012

Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
January 24, 2012

Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns will lead a high-level United States Government delegation to Africa from January 26-30. In Ethiopia, Deputy Secretary Burns will attend the 18th African Union (AU) Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on January 29 and 30. The Deputy Secretary will also meet with Prime Minister Meles and other senior officials to emphasize the strategic importance of that country to countering violent extremism in the greater Horn of Africa region. Deputy Secretary Burns will meet with several regional and international leaders on the margins of the AU summit.

Prior to the summit, the delegation will travel to Ghana, Uganda, and South Sudan. In Ghana, Deputy Secretary Burns is scheduled to meet with President Mills to reinforce the U.S. commitment to building strong ties with one of Africa’s leading democracies. The visit will highlight the United States’ continued commitment to presidential initiatives such as the Partnership for Growth and the Millennium Challenge Corporation. Deputy Secretary Burns will also meet with alumni of U.S. exchange programs.

In South Sudan, the Deputy Secretary will meet with Vice President Machar and other senior officials to encourage expeditious resolution to outstanding post-Comprehensive Peace Agreement issues. Deputy Secretary Burns will also encourage the Government of South Sudan’s efforts to promote reconciliation and break the cycle of inter-ethnic violence.

In Uganda, Deputy Secretary Burns’ discussions with President Museveni and members of Uganda’s civil society will highlight the strength of the bilateral partnership on a range of issues, including regional security and on helping Uganda strengthen its commitment to good governance and respect for human rights. Deputy Secretary Burns will also visit a medical clinic that is advancing integrated health service delivery, a key part of the U.S. Global Health Initiative.

PRN: 2012/111