ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) – President Donald Trump in a new letter to African leaders says he “deeply respects” the people of Africa and that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will make an “extended visit” to the continent in March.
The letter dated Thursday is addressed to African leaders as they gather for an African Union summit this weekend in Ethiopia’s capital.
U.S. diplomats have scrambled for days to address shock and condemnation after Trump’s reported comparison of African nations to a dirty toilet. Trump has said he didn’t use such language, while others present say he did.
Trump met with Rwanda’s president and new African Union chair Paul Kagame on Friday at the World Economic Forum, calling Kagame a “friend.”
The 55-nation continental body’s summit is expected to respond to Trump’s vulgar remark.