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Biden’s Top Diplomat Victoria Nuland To Meet President Samia, To Hold Roundtable with Opposition

The Biden administration is dispatching a top diplomat to four African countries where she will meet with three presidents to strengthen bilateral ties.

The administration said in a statement on Sunday that the U.S. State Department Under Secretary for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland will travel to South Africa, Botswana, Tanzania, and Niger from July 31 to August 6.

She will meet with the presidents of Botswana, Tanzania and Niger and top South African officials.

“In South Africa, the Under Secretary will meet with senior South African officials and co-chair the Working Group on African and Global Issues to advance shared priorities. She will welcome the United States’ donation of 5.66 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to South Africa, and meet with civil society and business leaders,” read a State Department statement detailing her trip.

In Botswana, the Under Secretary will meet with President Mokgweetsi Masisi to advance the partnership between nations on democracy, the climate crisis, economic prosperity, and security in southern Africa, while in Tanzania, the Under Secretary will meet with President Samia Suluhu Hassan and hold a roundtable with opposition leaders.

SOURCE: Today News Africa

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President Samia Suluhu’s Remarks After Meeting with President Kagame at Village Urugwiro in Kigali

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President @SuluhuSamia To Visit Rwanda on Monday, Islamist Insurgency in Mozambique Expected to be among Key Agenda in Talks between her and President @PaulKagame

  • Tanzanian President Samia Suhulu will on Monday arrive in Kigali for her first visit state to Rwanda. 
  • One of the most crucial topics of interest between the two countries now is the instability in Mozambique, where Rwanda has deployed 1000 soldiers and policemen to fight Islamist insurgents.
  • President Suluhu’s first trip was to Uganda in April, followed by Kenga in May.

Tanzanian President Samia Suhulu will on Monday arrive in Kigali for her first visit state to Rwanda.

During the two-day visit, she is expected to hold private talks with President Paul Kagame.

President Suluhu’s visit follows recent high-level meetings between top officials from the two countries.

The most recent meeting occurred on July 16, when Rwanda’s Minister of ICT, Paula Ingabire, met her Tanzanian counterpart, Faustine Ndugulile, to review submarine cable infrastructures in Tanzania that support communication services to Rwanda.

On July 9, Rwanda’s Ambassador to Tanzania, Major General Charles Karamba, met Tanzania’s Minister of Defence Elias Kwandikwa in Dodoma, where they discussed “mutual interest” topics.

One of the most crucial topics of interest between the two countries now is the instability in Mozambique, where Rwanda has deployed 1000 soldiers and policemen to fight Islamist insurgents.

Tanzania also has a Memorandum of Understanding with Mozambique – signed in November 2020 – to jointly battle against Islamists in Cabo Delgado Province.

Rwanda’s deployment of troops to Mozambique was not entirely supported by the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC), with reports indicating that the bloc expressed concern over a non-member deploying soldiers to the region without its approval.

Suluhu’s visit now provides Rwanda with an opportunity to woo one of SADC’s core members – Tanzania – on her side on matters related to the instability in Mozambique.

High on the agenda for talks between Suluhu and Kagame will also be the Isaka-Kigali standard gauge railway line, which has experienced delayed construction due to lack of funds.

The 532km railway line linking Rwanda to Tanzania and DRC is expected to cost up to $2.5 billion, with Tanzania paying $1.3 billion and Rwanda $1.2billion.

Rwanda and Tanzania have enjoyed cordial ties since 2015.

Before that both countries had a tumultuous past, at the height of which Rwanda accused Tanzanian officials of supporting rebels, while Tanzania also expelled thousands of Rwandan settlers in 2013.

They have been largely on the same page since 2015.

The most recent notable point of contention came in mid-2020 over disagreements on how to control border crossings during the coronavirus pandemic.

After back and forth interactions, the impasse was solved in May when Rwanda agreed to draw back its proposed swapping of drivers at Rusumo border, a proposal that had angered Tanzania’s truck drivers’ association.

Both countries also agreed to mandate the testing of truck drivers at their starting point in order to curtail the spread of Covid-19 across borders.

President Suluhu’s first trip was to Uganda in April, followed by Kenga in May.

Earlier in July, she visited Burundi, and with her visit to Rwanda, she will have visited all members of the East African Community – except South Sudan – within the first four months of her presidency.

This also means that she has visited more countries than her predecessor, John Pombe Magufuli, did in his first full year as president.

Source: The East African

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Tanzania Kicks Off COVID-19 Vaccinations

In a major breakthrough for one of the world’s last countries to embrace COVID-19 vaccines, Tanzania’s president kicked off the nation’s vaccination campaign Wednesday by publicly receiving a dose and urging others to do the same.

The East African country’s government under former President John Magufuli had long worried African health officials by denying the pandemic. Magufuli, who insisted the coronavirus could be defeated with prayer, died in March. The presidency went to his deputy, Samia Suluhu Hassan, who has since changed Tanzania’s course on COVID-19.

Hassan, who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, expressed confidence in the safety of vaccines and said the country of more than 58 million people will pursue more. The United States on Saturday announced the delivery of more than 1 million doses via the COVAX global initiative aimed at supplying low- and middle-income countries.

Tanzania went well over a year without updating its number of confirmed virus cases but has now resumed reporting the data to the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which showed 858 cases in the country as of Wednesday.

Critics of Tanzania’s past stance on COVID-19, however, have long warned that many more people have been infected.

Tanzania’s current president also has pledged to invest in vaccine manufacturing, according to the Africa CDC; the agency’s director, John Nkengasong, met with Hassan on Tuesday. African countries, hit hard by so-called vaccine nationalism as rich nations prioritize doses for their own citizens, are embracing the need to have more control over vaccine production.

Just two African countries still have yet to start COVID-19 vaccinations, Burundi and Eritrea. Burundi, whose late President Pierre Nkurunziza also had been criticized for downplaying the pandemic, has said vaccines aren’t needed yet. And Eritrea has long been criticized by human rights groups as one of the world’s most closed-off, repressive countries.

Source: AP

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President Samia Meets former British PM Tony Blair in Dar

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Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu off to Burundi Tomorrow for a 2-Day State Visit

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President Samia Holds Talks With US Secretary of State Blinken

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#MissEastAfrica2021 VP @JollyMutesi Lauds Tanzanian President @SuluhuSamia For Being Inspirational To Young Women

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Polepole Amtunishia Kifua Mama Samia Kuhusu Korona, Ataka “Mitishamba Ya JPM.”

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Amnesty International Proposes a Human Rights Agenda For Tanzania Under President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s New Administration.