President Obama won’t visit Kenya during first trip to Africa
Nikhil Kumar is The Independent's New York correspondent. He was formerly assistant editor on the foreign desk and has also done a variety of jobs on the city desk, where he wrote about markets, commodities and other business and economics topics.
Monday 24 June 2013
US President Barack Obama will skip a visit to Kenya, his father’s birthplace, during his trip to Africa this week, as the American administration seeks to distance itself from the regime of President Uhuru Kenyatta.
His first extended trip to Africa will include visits to Senegal, South Africa and Tanzania. Although a number of the US leader’s family still live in Kenya, the White House is concerned about the charges brought by the International Criminal Court against Mr Kenyatta and his Deputy President William Ruto, in connection with violent clashes that erupted in the wake of the country’s 2007 elections. The Kenyan President and Mr Ruto are accused of organising mobs and inciting violence, and face charges of crimes against humanity.
In the run-up to the poll that eventually installed Mr Kenyatta as President earlier this year, the top US diplomat for Africa signalled Washington’s worries in a conference call with reporters.
“Choices have consequences,” Johnnie Carson, the then US Assistant Secretary of State, said, without naming the candidates. “People should be thoughtful about those they choose to be leaders, the impact their choices would have on their country, region or global community,” he added.
Kenya’s government has been muted in its response to the president’s decision. “It’s for the Americans to decide where Obama goes,” spokesman Muthui Kariuki said. “There are 54 nations on the African continent and he’s only visiting three, so I don’t see the real big deal about not going to Kenya.”
Liam Neeson's Downton dreams
Thriller is set in the secret world of British espionage
Bomber jacket worn by Mary Berry sells out within an hour
- 1 Thailand beach murders: Thai PM suggests 'attractive' female tourists cannot expect to be safe wearing bikinis
- 2 Scottish independence: What you shouldn't tweet about if you want to avoid jail today
- 3 Scottish independence: Five reasons Salmond is secretly hoping for a 'No' vote
- 4 Isis plan to 'behead random member of the public' in Sydney thwarted by Australian police
- 5 Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God
Scottish independence referendum live: Clackmannanshire blazes the trail as 54% vote No while Yes trails with 46%
Scottish independence: Final opinion polls show undecided voters could swing result either way
Isis plan to 'behead random member of the public' in Sydney thwarted by Australian police
Scottish independence: Andy Murray backs Yes campaign in eleventh hour decision
Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
Unpaid Voluntary Position : Reach Volunteering: Promising volunteer Trustee op...
£30000 - £35000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...
£110 - £130 per hour: Randstad Education Reading: Psychology Teacher needed fo...
£85 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: Randstad Education are curren...