Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Travel Warning to Kenya

Travel Warning

United States Department of State
Bureau of Consular Affairs, Washington, DC


December 28, 2010

The U.S. Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to Kenya. U.S. citizens in Kenya and those considering travel to Kenya should evaluate their personal security situation in light of continuing threats from terrorism and the high rate of violent crime. This replaces the Travel Warning of July 24, 2009 to note areas of concern now include portions of Lamu district and provide additional cautions to U.S. citizens regarding potentially threatening circumstances.

The U.S. government continues to receive information regarding potential terrorist threats aimed at U.S., Western, and Kenyan interests in Kenya. Terrorist acts could include suicide operations, bombings, kidnappings, attacks on civil aviation as evidenced by the 2002 attacks on an Israeli airliner, and attacks on maritime vessels in or near Kenyan ports. Many of those responsible for the attacks on the U.S. Embassy in 1998 and on a hotel in Mombasa in 2002 remain at large and continue to operate in the region. Travelers should consult the Worldwide Caution for further information and details.

In July 2009, three NGO workers were kidnapped and taken into Somalia by suspected members of a terrorist group that operates out of Somalia. In November 2008, armed groups based in Somalia crossed into Kenya near the town of El Wak and kidnapped two Westerners. The U.S. Embassy in Nairobi has designated a portion of Kenya bordering Somalia and Ethiopia as “restricted without prior authorization” for purposes of travel by U.S. Government employees, contractors, grantees, and their dependents. Travelers should be aware that U.S. Embassy security personnel recently expanded the restricted area to include portions of Lamu district. This designation is based on reports of Somali-based armed groups known to have crossed into Kenya to stage attacks or to commit crimes. This restriction does not apply to travelers not associated with the U.S. government, but should be taken into account when planning travel. The restriction is in effect for the following areas:

-All of Mandera District.

-The entire area north and east of the town of Wajir, including travel on Highway C80 and areas east of C80 and an 80-kilometer (about 50 miles) wide band contiguous with the Somalia border. Travel to and within the towns of Wajir and Moyale remains unrestricted.

-Within Garissa District, an 80-kilometer (about 50 miles) wide band contiguous with the Somalia border. Travel to and within the town of Dadaab remains unrestricted.

-Within Ijara District, an 80-kilometer (about 50 miles) wide band contiguous with the Somalia border; Boni National Reserve.

-Within Lamu District, a 60-kilometer (about 40 miles) wide band starting northeast of Pate Island to the Somalia border. Towns and resorts within/contiguous to the Kiunga Marine Reserve are now included in the restricted area.

Violent and sometimes fatal criminal attacks, including armed carjackings, home invasions/burglaries and kidnappings can occur at any time and in any location, particularly in Nairobi. As recently as spring 2010, U.S. nationals were victims of carjacking and kidnapping. In the short-term, the continued displacement of thousands of people by the civil unrest of 2008 combined with endemic poverty and the availability of weapons could result in an increase in crime, both petty and violent. Kenyan authorities have limited capacity to deter or investigate such acts or prosecute perpetrators.

U.S. citizens in Kenya should be extremely vigilant with regard to their personal security, particularly in public places frequented by foreigners such as clubs, hotels, resorts, upscale shopping centers, restaurants, and places of worship. U.S. citizens should also remain alert in residential areas, at schools, and at outdoor recreational events.

U.S. citizens should avoid demonstrations and political rallies of all kinds. Most political gatherings are peaceful, but they can turn violent with no notice. In the run-up to the constitutional referendum in June 2010, six Kenyans were killed and 100injured at a prayer meeting/political rally in Uhuru Park in downtown Nairobi.

U.S. citizens who travel to or reside in Kenya are urged to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) in order to receive the most up-to-date security information. By enrolling, U.S. citizens make it easier for the Embassy to contact them in case of emergency. U.S. citizens without Internet access may enroll directly with the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi. The U.S. Embassy is located on United Nations Avenue, Gigiri, Nairobi, Kenya; telephone (254) (20) 363-6000; fax (254) (20) 363-6410. In the event of an after-hours emergency, the Embassy duty officer may be contacted at (254) (20) 363-6000. Travelers may also consult the Embassy home page for more information.

U.S. citizens should also consult the Department of State's Country Specific Information for Kenya and the Worldwide Caution, which are located on the Department of State's website. Travelers may obtain up-to-date information on security conditions by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the U.S. or outside the U.S. and Canada on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. Stay up to date by bookmarking our Bureau of Consular Affairs website, which contains current Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts. Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook as well.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Zimbabwe Dialogue - The Copenhagen Statement


Office of the Spokesman
December 22, 2010
The following statement was agreed upon by the countries attending a meeting of the Friends of Zimbabwe held in Copenhagen on December 10, 2010.

Participants: U.S., Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, European Commission (EC), EU Council Secretariat, International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, African Development Bank (AFDB), United Nations

Begin text:

At a moment when Zimbabwe has to make critical decisions on the way forward, we, friends of Zimbabwe, met in Copenhagen and re-emphasized our commitment to the Zimbabwean people through support for reform and recovery.

We welcomed the progress achieved since the Global Political Agreement (GPA) and the formation of the Inclusive Government, including the restoration of basic services, the constitutional process, launching of Human Rights, Media and Electoral Commissions and a significant improvement in macroeconomic management.

However, serious concerns remain relating to the protection of fundamental rights, the rule of law, governance and respect for agreements.

Credible and legitimate elections in line with Southern African Development Community (SADC) guidelines, that are free of violence and that accept the will of the people, are central to democratic transformation in Zimbabwe. To reach this point, the Zimbabwean government needs to create the enabling environment, and agree on and implement significant reforms as stipulated in the GPA. Zimbabweans should not face violence and intimidation to cast their votes.

We welcomed ongoing regional efforts to support democratization in Zimbabwe and we actively encourage regional actors, and SADC and South Africa in particular, to further assist Zimbabwe in ensuring the conditions for credible, legitimate and peaceful elections. We are ready in response to review and adjust, as appropriate, the full range of our efforts and policies.

We commended the significant gains in macroeconomic stabilization and encourage the continuation of efforts aimed at strengthening economic recovery, the promotion of enhanced transparency and the implementation of structural and legal reforms, including the protection of property rights that will help attract foreign investment. We look to international financial institutions to deepen their engagement, including, inter alia, through an IMF Staff-Monitored-Program when all requirements have been met.

The increasing state revenue and strengthening the public finance system provide an opportunity to improve living conditions of ordinary Zimbabweans. It is critical in this regard that the development of natural resources is pursued in a transparent manner that empowers and benefits the people. A critical example of this is Zimbabwe’s compliance with its commitments under the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme for rough diamonds.

Collectively, we are intensifying our efforts to support democratic reform, enhance the livelihoods of the poor, and restore basic services. Programs benefit Zimbabweans regardless of political persuasion. For example, through the now operational ZimFund, support is provided for the rehabilitation of water and power delivery systems. In 2010, every child in primary school has been provided with new text books, and 600,000 households have received agricultural inputs. In 2011, we expect our collective programs to total more than $500 million. We intend to continue to provide our assistance taking into consideration the priorities of the inclusive government as reflected in the budget and in government sector policies.

The coming months will determine Zimbabwe’s prospects for the years to come. We remain committed to helping achieve the goal of a prosperous and democratic Zimbabwe.

Statement by President Obama on the Inauguration of President Conde of Guinea


Office of the Press Secretary


December 22, 2010

Statement by the President on the Inauguration of President Conde of Guinea

On behalf of the American people, I congratulate the people of Guinea as they witness the inauguration of their first democratically elected President since becoming an independent state in 1958. Just over a year ago, the world’s attention was drawn to Guinea by horrifying atrocities and dangerous instability. Today, people all over the world are coming together to congratulate Guinea, and to express genuine admiration for the voters who steadfastly acted to support peace and democracy. They have set their country on a path for a more prosperous and stable future.

As the country begins its new democratic era, I extend congratulations to President Alpha Conde on his inauguration. I also express my appreciation for the way in which Cellou Dalein Diallo gracefully accepted the outcome of the election and spoke of the importance of a unified Guinea in moving forward. While the road ahead may be challenging, the United States looks forward to working with the incoming administration as it pursues an inclusive government that represents the people of Guinea, irrespective or ethnicity, religion, and gender; establishes a platform of economic development for all to realize the dividends of democracy; and works to enact critical reforms in the security sector.

The past year will remain a powerful example of how a country at such a pivotal moment can make a choice for a better future, and the responsibility of those in positions of authority to put the country first. As such, I also recognize and honor the leadership of Interim President General Sékouba Konaté who provided the necessary vision and support for Guinea’s historic transition.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

U.S. & South Africa Sign PEPFAR Partnership Framework Agreement

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE Office of the Spokesman
December 14, 2010


Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton And South African Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane Participates in U.S.-South African PEPFAR Partnership Framework Agreement

Signing Ceremony December 14, 2010 Treaty Room - Washington, D.C.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, good afternoon. Welcome to the Treaty Room here in the State Department.

Before we begin with the business at hand today, on behalf of all the women and men at the State Department I want to express my deepest condolences to the family of Ambassador Richard Holbrooke. Richard was a trusted friend, a valued mentor, and an indispensable colleague to so many of several generations of American diplomats. Of all the many things that have already been said and will be said – and it has been remarkable to see the tributes coming in from around the world – the word that keeps being said over and over again is “statesman.” It’s a word that we don’t use much anymore, but Richard embodied it, a man who loved our country and dedicated his life to serving not only our people but the cause of peace, a diplomat who used every tool in the toolbox and someone who accomplished so much on behalf of so many.

I am very grateful for the wonderful support that has been given to Richard’s family. I have no doubt that Richard would be the first to urge us to go forward and continue his work and continue his mission of not only what he was doing in Afghanistan and Pakistan, but across the broad reach of American foreign policy.

Let me now welcome a friend and an esteemed colleague who I have had the great pleasure of working with now for over a year, someone who has demonstrated the vigor of the Zuma Administration in her country in tackling problems at home, regionally, and globally. And today we will sign a new partnership framework for the PEPFAR program, which has so much meaning to us as a partner with our friends in South Africa. It embodies a new level of cooperation that has been made possible because of the tremendous efforts of the South African Government.

In addition to Minister Mashabane, I want to welcome Director General Ntsaluba, Ambassador Diseko, Ambassador Rasool, Ambassador Nene. I’d also like to recognize our Ambassador Gips, Ambassador Goosby, Ambassador Carson, and so many others both here and elsewhere in Washington, at our Embassy in Pretoria, and, most importantly, in the Government of South Africa.

We are here at a moment when South Africa is turning the tide against HIV/AIDS. It is exciting to see, and we are already reviewing surveys being done by the South African Government as the minister will, I’m sure, mention that shows HIV among youth is falling. We want to do everything we can to be a good partner. In his moving speech on World Aids Day last year, President Zuma noted that HIV/AIDs is a disease that can only be overcome by individuals taking responsibility for their own lives and the lives of those around them.

And what South Africa has done is to make a tremendous commitment by doubling its investment, now covering 60 percent of the total spending. There is so much that’s being done at the grassroots level on prevention, efforts against discrimination, treating people with HIV, and doing so much more to put together a comprehensive strategy. And we together have worked on the development of a promising microbicide that could prevent the transmission of the HIV virus. This was led by South African scientists, and it’s the kind of new partnership we want to see more of together.

There is a lot that we want to do far beyond HIV/AIDS. In fact, the minister and I are very proud to lead a very reinvigorated bilateral strategic dialogue. We just reviewed the progress in our recently concluded meeting, and I think it’s fair to say that a lot of good is being done that is making a difference in the lives of people in both of our countries and beyond.

So now it is my great pleasure to invite the minister to make her remarks.

MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Thanks very much. My dear friend and colleague Secretary of State Madam Clinton, it is always such a great pleasure for me to be here with you. And I would really at the outset want to take this opportunity on behalf of myself and our delegation to pay our sincere message of sympathy to the Ambassador Holbrooke family, to your good self, to President Obama, government and people of the United States. Indeed, you have lost in him a dedicated diplomat and a dedicated statesman and a friend of the international community. May his soul rest in peace, and our hearts go out, again, to the family.

Indeed, in you, I have found a true friend but also a working partner. But we are working together to reinvigorate the very, very strong and very important bilateral ties that looks at our bilateral relationship, elevated to another level through the strategic partnership and strategic dialogue that we have solidified by signing, I hope – in this room last – this year in April. The amount of work that our working groups working on our leadership had covered, from issues around trade and investments to issues of food security, to issues of fighting HIV and AIDS.

And I can confirm what you’ve just said, but in the period that we’ve been working together, starting from last year during a visit in South Africa through Minister Dr. Motsoaledi and President Zuma and all our cabinet members – with your support, we have put 1.1 million people under this care of the HIV and AIDS treatment. We have tested more than 5 million South Africans. And with Dr. Motsoaledi, our minister of health, in the next less than 18 months, we’ll have tested about 15 million South Africans who should really take responsibility to take care of themselves, but also take care of their loved ones.

This partnership under PEPFAR, it’s really through Ambassador Goosby and all those who work with him – really, bravo, and thank you ever so much for the support. It really – it’s turning the tide at home. South African Government spends about 6 billion rand on this program, and your 2.3 billion rand will go a long way. The U.S.A. is a leader; don’t be shy to lead. You lead by also showing compassion to those who need you, those who can account for the resources that you provide for them for support.

I was quite elated to learn from our trade and investment delegation that the last time they’ve had such a vigorous engagement with their counterparts here was about nine years ago. So our partnership has really taken this relationship forward. We want to work with you to make AGOA bring meaning to many of our African compatriots. We have listened to your views about the national investment initiative that President Obama leads. Within, there are synergies between the two, and we should continue to work on that. Under our partnership, we also work on issues around peace, security, peacekeeping, peacemaking, and post-conflict in Africa, which is highly appreciated by all of us.

Madam Secretary, we walk into the United Nations Security Council hoping to find a good friend there under your leadership, your good self. We would want to make a contribution with many progressive governments around the world, in particular with your government, to make sure that United Nations Security Council work for peace around the world, and peace dialogue, and peace first priority. We are making an undertaking here that together with all African countries, we will work to make sure that we bring the AU Peace and Security Council to the table to work with the United Nations Security Council.

Madam Secretary, I would like to express my sincere gratitude for your warm hospitality, but inside this building, I actually forget that it’s winter outside. (Laughter.) It’s always a pleasure to meet with you, and I look forward to hosting you again in South Africa next year for our second round of strategic dialogue. I guess by that time, we will have even – covered even greater grounds.

May I take this opportunity to thank our very, very energetic and hardworking ambassadors – Ambassador Gips, Ambassador Rasool, and all the leadership, all for our respective departments – Dr. Ntsaluba, Ambassador Carson, and all your delegations, as you have mentioned them all, and each one of them by name. Thank you ever so much. We look smart, we look progressive, we look focused because you work very, very hard with us.

Once again, bravo, and well done.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you so much. Well, they do make us look good.


(The document was signed.)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Remarks by Secratary Clinton & Nigerian Foreign Minister Ajumogobia


Office of the Spokesman

For Immediate Release - December 9, 2010

Remarks After Their Meeting

December 9, 2010 - Treaty Room, Washington, D.C.

SECRETARY CLINTON: I’m delighted to welcome the foreign minister back to the State Department to continue our ongoing discussions about our bilateral interests and our shared concerns around the world. Among the chief concerns we discussed today is the unresolved political situation in Cote D'Ivoire. We are in full agreement that Alassane Ouattara is the rightfully elected president of Cote D'Ivoire and that former President Laurent Gbagbo should respect the results of the election and peacefully transfer power to his successor. President Obama is personally involved. He has sent a letter to President Gbagbo urging him to step aside and warning of consequences if he does not.

Nigeria has shown commendable leadership on this issue at an emergency summit convened this week by President Jonathan. The Economic Community of West African States confirmed the election results and echoed the call for Gbagbo to step down, a crucial step that shows the resolve of leaders in the region to respect the will of the people. The United Nations Security Council, Cote D'Ivoire’s own Independent Electoral Commission, the United Nations Special Representative for Cote D'Ivoire have all endorsed this outcome, as well as the African Union.

So the international community is united. Democracy is about more than just holding elections. It is about respecting the outcome of elections and the voice of the governed, upholding principles that are greater than any one person. As President Obama said last year in Ghana, Africa doesn't need strong men, it needs strong institutions. This is an opportunity for Cote D'Ivoire to move past years of crisis, build its institutions, and take steps to ensure a more peaceful and prosperous future.

This is yet another example of why we appreciate greatly the important role Nigeria has played promoting regional stability in West Africa, supporting the Independent Election Commissions in Cote D'Ivoire and Guinea. Nigeria has been a leading voice in calling on its neighbors to respect the will of the majority and refrain from violence.

As Nigeria’s own 2011 election approaches, we look forward to seeing Nigeria lead by example and put into practice in its own democracy the kind of election that will draw universal admiration. This is a critical opportunity for Nigerians to participate in an election that delivers greater government accountability, improved infrastructure and services, and broader economic opportunity for the Nigerian people. The United States stands ready to support Nigeria as it creates a peaceful environment for the elections that will build bridges between ethnic and religious groups and enhance Nigeria’s authority on the global stage.

The foreign minister and I discussed the status of our U.S.-Nigeria Binational Commission. It has had several high-level meetings both in Abuja and in Washington over the past months, focusing on electoral reform, preparing for elections, and having productive working group meetings on corruption, good governance, energy, the Niger Delta, regional security, and so much else. Next year we hope to hold talks in Nigeria on agriculture and food security.

Nigeria is a strategic ally and partner. In addition to Nigeria’s leadership in ECOWAS and the African Union, it has been an active member of the UN Security Council, and I wish to thank the minister for Nigeria’s leadership on the Council.

Nigeria’s preliminary report to the Iran Sanctions Committee on its investigation of the illicit arms shipment uncovered in Lagos underlines its crucial role in the international system. And Nigeria will continue its investigation as we work together to fully implement UN Security Council resolutions on Iran.

I want to thank the minister for the active role that Nigeria played in the Security Council discussion on Sudan several weeks ago.

On this and on so many other issues, I see an increasing role of authority and leadership on the part of Nigeria on the global stage. Since I visited Nigeria just over a year ago, the relationship between our countries has continued to grow. Our partnership is rooted in the values our people share and our common belief in the future of Nigeria and Africa as a whole. And I look forward, Minister, to continuing that partnership for many years ahead.

FOREIGN MINISTER AJUMOGOBIA: Thank you very much. Thank you, Madam Secretary. I am here again – I was here in September. I’m here again to reinforce the new vigor in the relationship between Nigeria and the United States. Since I was here in September, a lot has happened. We’ve had elections in Cote D'Ivoire, we’ve had elections in Guinea, and I would say we – I guess we won one and lost one. (Laughter.) But we hope Cote D'Ivoire will still be a success.

Nigeria stands united with the international community in endorsing the results announced by the Independent Electoral Commission in Cote D'Ivoire, and identifying with the decision that Alassane Ouattara is the president-elect of Cote D'Ivoire.

The summit was unanimous, led by President Jonathan – it was unanimous in this decision. And as you probably are aware, ECOWAS has suspended Cote D'Ivoire. Under the ECOWAS protocol, the limits on the sort of sanctions that are available to us, the options, the options are limited to sanctions against a country and we’ve done what we can do in that regard. But President Jonathan has made it clear that we will support and the organization will support the – any sanctions regime prescribed by the international community, the UN, the EU, and the African Union.

We also talked about, of course, elections in Nigeria. And I wanted to reassure the Secretary that things are on course. We’re doing everything we can do to ensure that we have credible elections in 2011. And I am reasonably satisfied that in spite of some of the challenges that we still have, we will have credible elections in 2011.

We also spoke about the possibility between now and the elections of more – greater support under the framework of the BNC in terms of engagement of the U.S. private sector in Nigeria through investment in our infrastructure. The details, of course, will have to be worked out, but a framework that gives support and strength to the electoral process that we’re so firmly committed to.

We believe that the framework that – of the Binational Commission which involves not just good governance and elections, but also investment and energy, food security and agriculture and security in the Niger Delta. All these coming together will provide a process to create jobs which, ultimately, perhaps the single greatest threat to democracy in Africa, the fact of the teeming young number of people who are not employed and have no prospects of employment. We believe the United States can assist us in the process of creating jobs in Nigeria, but in a way that provides jobs here in the United States, provides American companies who would supply goods and services to also benefit from the engagement with Nigeria.

We’ve also talked about the – as you all know, we had a terrorist attack on October 1st, our independence day celebrations. I must thank the United States for the support we had in terms of intelligence sharing that helped us in limiting and mitigating some of the damage that might have been caused by that unfortunate incident and resulted in the culprits being caught and who are now being tried in courts in Nigeria and outside Nigeria.

So once again, I am happy to be here to try and reinforce this very important relationship with the United States. We believe that we will – we won’t let you down.

MR. CROWLEY: (Inaudible) Jill Dougherty from CNN.

QUESTION: Thank you very much. Madam Secretary, the Chinese dissident Liu Xiabo is going to be getting the Nobel Peace Prize. The Chinese Government appears to be furious. They say that this is an imposition of Western values on China. How do you answer that?

And then also there’s an incident that took place very recently with the Indian ambassador, who was subjected to a pat-down at a Mississippi airport. I just checked a statement by the Indian foreign minister, exterior minister, who said that it’s unacceptable. They’re issuing a demarche. And in a broader sense, is it time to look at how diplomats – there have been previous instances – are treated domestically as they travel around the United States?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, Jill, as to the first question, the United States has made its views very well known with respect to the Nobel Peace Prize. We believe that human rights are universal and that the right to express one’s opinions and to engage in peaceful expression of those ideas is really at the core of what human rights means anywhere in the world.

We have made our position very clear to the Chinese Government. The United States will be represented at the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony, although neither the recipient nor his wife will be permitted to travel.

And we continue to encourage the Chinese to open up their own political space for greater exchange of opinions and advocacy of ideas. We raise human rights in every meeting that we have between the United States and China, and we will continue to do so.

With regard to the second question, although I was not until just recently aware of the incident, we obviously are concerned about it. I met with the Indian ambassador and other representatives of the Indian Government on Tuesday. It was not raised with me or raised directly with the Department. But certainly, we will be looking into it and not only responding to the Indian foreign minister but also reviewing the policies.

As you know, this matter is under the jurisdiction of the Department of Homeland Security, and all questions about it specifically should be referred to them. But we will be looking into it and trying to determine both what happened and what we could do to prevent such incidents in the future.

MR. CROWLEY: (Off-mike.)

QUESTION: Okay. My question is for Secretary Clinton. Just recently, Nigerian Government filed corruption charges against former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney and I’m aware that Nigeria and the United States signed a – the mutual assistance treaty, and very soon I believe the case will be coming up in court. Should we be looking at the possibility of former Vice President Dick Cheney coming to Nigeria on the request of the Nigerian Government to face those charges?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, I’m not going to comment on any legal matter. Once an issue is in the court system, we will handle it through appropriate legal channels. So that’s got to be the way that we’re going to respond. But of course, we do not believe that there will be a basis for further action, but we will look into it.

MR. CROWLEY: Thank you very much.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you very much.

# # #

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Secretary Clinton on Burkina Faso's 50th Independence Anniversary

Office of the Spokeman

For Immediate Release - December 8, 2010


Burkina Faso’s Independence Day

On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I congratulate the people of Burkina Faso on the 50th anniversary of your independence this December 11

Burkina Faso and the United States proudly work together to strengthen democracy, advance human rights, and pursue sustainable development for the people of Burkina Faso and throughout West Africa. Burkina Faso has been a valued advocate for regional peace and stability as a mediator and through your contributions to African peacekeeping operations. The United States looks forward to expanding our partnership in the years to come as we work together to implement Burkina Faso’s Millennium Challenge Corporation Compact.

The United States firmly believes in the promise and bright future of Burkina Faso. I wish all Burkinabè a safe and joyous fiftieth anniversary celebration.


Friday, December 3, 2010

Statement Congratulating Alpha Condé on his Presidential Victory in Guinea


Office of the Spokesman

For Immediate Release

December 3, 2010


Statement Congratulating Alpha Condé on his Presidential Victory in Guinea

The United States Government congratulates Guinea on the successful completion of its first democratic presidential election since gaining independence 52 years ago. While the 2010 presidential race is a great leap, it is only the first step on the road to democratic transition and civilian rule. We hope that other countries in the region will follow Guinea’s example.

The United States congratulates President-elect Alpha Condé on his victory and we welcome his pledge to work with and serve all Guineans, regardless of political affiliation or ethnic background. We look forward to working with President-elect Condé as he forges a government reflective of the needs and aspirations of all Guineans. The United States will partner with Guinea’s new government in meeting the country’s demands for democratic reforms, human rights, and good governance. Additionally, the United States will continue to provide appropriate assistance and support to Guinea as the new government looks toward legislative elections.

# # #

US Travel Advisory for Guinea

United States Department of State

Bureau of Consular Affairs

Washington, DC 20520


December 3, 2010

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to Guinea as the political situation there remains unpredictable. This Travel Warning replaces that of June 16, 2010, to update information on the security situation and note that children of U.S. citizen employees of the Embassy have not yet been authorized to return to post.

Although Guinea has been relatively calm since the interim government declared a State of Emergency on November 18 to deter violence and protests following the disputed November 7 presidential election, large crowds of demonstrators have continued to block major intersections throughout the capital, and pelt passing vehicles with rocks. Additionally, an upsurge in property crime has resulted in the issuance of a 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew. U.S. citizens are advised that, although the U.S. Embassy in Conakry returned to full staffing on March 29 after a six-month evacuation of family members and non-emergency staff, minor children of U.S. citizen employees of the Embassy have not yet been authorized to return. This restriction will be periodically reevaluated.

The U.S. Embassy in Guinea is open. The Embassy’s consular section continues to provide emergency and other services to U.S. citizens. However, citizens should be aware that the Embassy may be forced to suspend all operations, including emergency services, without advance notice if the security situation deteriorates. The international airport in Conakry is operating normally at this time, but flights may be suspended if the current security situation worsens. Land borders are also open, but may close without warning. U.S. citizens are urged to exercise extreme caution, to be particularly alert to their surroundings, and to avoid crowds, demonstrations, or any other form of public gathering. Visitors to Guinea should be familiar with their hotel evacuation plans, policies, or procedures.

U.S. citizens in Guinea should carry their travel documents (i.e., passport, birth certificate, picture IDs, etc.) with them at all times. Additionally, U.S. citizens in Guinea are reminded to stay in contact with friends and family in the United States to keep them apprised of their current welfare and whereabouts.

All U.S. citizens traveling to or remaining in Guinea despite this Travel Warning are strongly urged to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP - so you can receive the most up-to-date security information. You should remember to keep all of your information in STEP up to date. It is important during enrollment or updating of information to include your current phone number and current email address where you can be reached in case of emergency.

The U.S. Embassy is located on the Transversale No. 2, Centre Administratif de Koloma, opposite the New Radio Station in Ratoma, Conakry, Guinea. You can call the Embassy switchboard at +224-65-10-4000, or reach the consular section directly by calling +224-67-10-4444. For after-hours emergencies, please call +224-67-10-4311.

Updated information on travel and security in Guinea may be obtained from the Department of State by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free within the United States and Canada or, for callers outside of the United States and Canada, on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. For further information, please consult the Country Specific Information for Guinea and the Worldwide Caution, which are available on the Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet website at

Statement by President Obama on the Election Results in Cote d’Ivoire


Office of the Press Secretary


December 3, 2010

Statement by the President on the Election Results in Cote d’Ivoire

“I congratulate Alassane Outtara on his victory in Cote d’Ivoire’s November 28 elections. The Independent Electoral Commission, credible and accredited observers, and the United Nations have all confirmed this result and attested to its credibility.

Cote d’Ivoire is now at a crossroads. I urge all parties, including incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo, to acknowledge and respect this result, and to allow Cote d’Ivoire to move forward toward a peaceful, democratic future, leaving long years of conflict and missed opportunities in the past. The international community will hold those who act to thwart the democratic process and the will of the electorate accountable for their actions.”