Saturday, August 5, 2017

US Issues Statement on Presidential Election in Rwanda

Press Statement
Heather Nauert
Department of State Spokesperson
Washington, DC
August 5, 2017

The United States congratulates the people of Rwanda on their active and peaceful participation in the presidential election held August 4. However, we are disturbed by irregularities observed during voting and reiterate long-standing concerns over the integrity of the vote-tabulation process.

We commend the Rwandan media for reporting on complaints of harassment of some opposition candidates and Rwandan citizens during the campaign. We likewise commend average citizens, the National Electoral Commission, and government officials for speaking out and addressing those complaints. We applaud the televised debate, while noting that voters’ understanding would have benefited from broader participation of the candidates themselves.

We remain concerned by the lack of transparency in determining the eligibility of prospective candidates. We hope the new electoral law to be debated in the next session of Parliament will clarify that process well before the 2018 parliamentary elections.

The United States stands by the people of Rwanda in their efforts to build strong democratic and inclusive institutions in order to ensure long-term stability and a democratic, prosperous future for all.

US Issues Statement on Mali

Press Statement
Heather Nauert
Department of State Spokesperson
Washington, DC
July 31, 2017

The United States condemns recurring violations of the ceasefire that have occurred in Mali between signatory armed groups to the 2015 Algiers Peace Accord. We urge the parties to end hostilities immediately and to strictly comply with their obligations under international humanitarian law and to respect human rights, particularly with respect to civilians and prisoners. We are greatly disturbed at reports of reprisal killings of civilians and the discovery of unmarked grave sites in the areas of conflict. We welcome the inquiries led by the UN peacekeeping mission, the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA). If the allegations prove true, the perpetrators must be brought to justice.

We applaud efforts to bring the parties together to agree to a cessation of hostilities, and we deplore the parties’ failure to do so. We call on all parties to redouble their efforts to abide by the ceasefire and fully implement the Algiers Peace Accord. The United States stands with the people of Mali as they work to build a country that is peaceful, prosperous, and united.‎ The United States also supports the efforts of the Group of Five Sahel states (Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, and Niger) in creating a Joint Force and undertaking other actions to address threats that destabilize Mali and other parts of the sub-region and make lasting peace that much more elusive.

Sec. Tillerson Issues Statement on Niger’s National Day

Department of State
Washington, DC
August 4, 2017

On behalf of the Government of the United States, our congratulations to the government and people of Niger as you celebrate your nation’s independence.

The United States will continue to work with Niger to encourage economic growth, assist with counterterrorism efforts, and support a vibrant civil society. We value our strong, multi-faceted partnership and commend Niger’ critical role in ensuring stability in the Sahel.

We extend to the people of Niger wishes for peace and prosperity as you celebrate the 57th anniversary of your independence.

Sec. Tillerson Issues Statement on Benin’s National Day

Department of State
Washington, DC
August 1, 2017

On behalf of the United States, congratulations to the people of Benin as you celebrate the 57th anniversary of your national independence on August 1st.

The United States reaffirms its support of Benin and its goal of a better and more prosperous future. We use this opportunity to recognize both our commitments to partner on regional stability, sustainable economic growth, and universal respect for human rights.

Our best wishes to you on this special day.

Monday, July 31, 2017

2017 Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders Summit

Office of the Spokesperson
Department of State
Washington, DC
July 28, 2017

Representatives of the U.S. Government, private sector, and civil society will meet with nearly 1,000 young leaders from Sub-Saharan Africa during the State Department-sponsored Mandela Washington Fellowship Summit from July 31-August 2, in Washington, DC. The Mandela Washington Fellowship and Summit fosters and builds relationships that support and expand U.S.-Africa cooperation on shared goals the continent.

The Summit, held at the Marriott Marquis Hotel, will feature an Expo with more than 100 organizations engaged with Africa, as well as a Congressional Forum and other leadership and networking sessions. The young African leaders are convening in Washington after six weeks of academic study and leadership training at 38 higher education institutions across the United States as part of the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders. Alumni of the Fellowship are playing a role in strengthening democratic institutions, spurring economic growth, and enhancing peace and security in Africa. The Mandela Washington Fellowship is the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative, the United States’ effort to invest in the next generation of African leaders.

The Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders is a program of the U.S. Government and is supported in its implementation by IREX.

DC MOAA Hosts Third Annual Mandela Day of Service

File Photo

Story: DC MOAA

On Friday, July 14, 2017, the Mayor’s Office on African Affairs (MOAA) in partnership with Howard University, the UNESCO Center for Peace and the Commission on African Affairs hosted its third annual Young African ConneXions Summit (YAX) themed Strengthening Diaspora Partnerships. The Summit was held at the Howard University School of Business Auditorium as part of MOAA’s Community and Youth Engagement Outreach program.

Following the annual Young African ConneXions Summit, MOAA hosted its third annual Mandela Day of Service on Saturday, July 15, 2017. The agency was joined by volunteers at the Anacostia Park Skating Rink on 1800 Anacostia Drive, Washington, DC 20003, for 67 minutes of community service to commemorate the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela.

Please visit our Facebook page to view pictures of the events #YAX2017 and Mandela Day of Service

US Issues Statement on Libya

Press Statement
Heather Nauert
Department of State Spokesperson
Washington, DC
July 28, 2017

The United States remains committed to working with Libya and our international partners to help resolve the political conflict and advance peace and long-term stability in Libya.

While the Libyan people must lead the process of achieving political reconciliation in their country, the international community plays an important role in supporting those efforts.

In this regard, we welcome the Joint Declaration from the July 25, meeting between Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj and General Khalifa Haftar, hosted outside of Paris by French President Emmanuel Macron. We call on all Libyans to support political dialogue and adhere to a cease-fire, as stated in the Joint Declaration.

The United States also welcomes new UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Libya Ghassan Salamé as the head of the UN Support Mission in Libya, UNSMIL, which plays a critical role in advancing lasting peace and stability. We look forward to working with him to help Libyans reach a political solution.