Posts Tagged ‘Maite Nkoana-Mashabane’

Hillary Clinton describes the Obama Administration’s Africa policy in typical Hillary fashion as resting on four pillars.

  1. Promoting opportunity and development,
  2. Spurring economic growth, trade, and investment,
  3. Advancing peace and security,
  4. Strengthening democratic institutions.

China, as we know, is  heavily invested in Africa.  Her description of that relationship as one of exploitation of natural resources in exchange for glitzy structure and infrastructure that benefits them and excludes local labor.  Her concern is the damage being inflicted by some foreign investment.

She quotes her remark to a TV interview question in Zambia in June 2011.

… our view is that over the long run, investments in Africa should be sustainable and for the benefit of the African people.

Confronted with a suggestion that the Chinese model, basically a hands-off local government model might serve African nations better than the good-governance model that could be interpreted as imposed by the west, responded:


It is easy – and we saw that during colonial times – it is easy to come in, take out natural resources, pay off leaders, and leave. And when you leave, you don’t leave much behind for the people who are there. You don’t improve the standard of living. You don’t create a ladder of opportunity.

We don’t want to see a new colonialism in Africa. We want, when people come to Africa and make investments, we want them to do well, but we also want them to do good. We don’t want them to undermine good governance. We don’t want them to basically deal with just the top elites and, frankly, too often pay for their concessions or their opportunities to invest.

Hillary Clinton’s Media Outreach: Three Interviews from Lusaka, Zambia

She mentions this speech where she spoke of sustainable partnerships that add rather than subtract value.

Hillary Clinton on Building Sustainable Partnerships in Africa

 On the subject of the disturbing downward trend in electoral democracies on the continent she refers to a speech in 2011 at African Union Headquarters where she warned African leaders that the Arab Spring could spread.  We wondered, viewing the video, why she was speaking in the dark.  It turned out that there was a power outage that occurred while she spoke that might have been a coincidence.  It is a message that older, entrenched leaders do not want to hear.  Hillary remarks upon the reluctance of some of these leaders, often seen as liberators from colonialism, to cede power.  The phenomenon is endemic on the continent.

She delivered a similar message to Arab elders at Forum for the Future in Morocco in November 2009.  Neither was that audience particularly receptive to the message of inclusiveness.  The Arab Spring was a reaction to policies that she knew then, through her interactions with civil society in Arab countries, would boil over sooner or later boil over.  A look at the slideshow in this post speaks more than 1,000 words.

Video: Secretary Clinton’s Remarks at African Union Headquarters, Addis Ababa

Putting forth the example of a grassroots Senegalese movement effectively defeating Abdoulaye Wade in their 2012 election,  she posits that democratic change is possible in Africa and quotes further from her sustainable partnerships speech in Dakar.

I know there is sometimes an argument that democracy is a privilege belonging to wealthy countries, and that developing economies must put economic growth first and worry about democracy later. But that’s not the lesson of history. Over the long run, you can’t have effective economic liberalization without political liberalization … the United States will stand up for democracy and universal human rights, even when it might be easier or more profitable to look the other way, to keep the resources flowing. Not every partner makes that choice, but we do and we will.

Liberia, today so unfortunately stricken with the ebola epidemic,  stands as a shining example of democracy in Africa as Hillary points out that former enemies on the field of battle now sit side by side in the legislative chambers.

Clinton poses with a Liberian newspaper in Monrovia

Hillary Clinton’s Address to Joint Session of Liberian National Legislature

Some of you have seen a film that tells the story of a Liberian woman’s efforts to end the war. Tired of the killing and the conflict, she organized women at her church and then other churches and in mosques until thousands of Liberian women had joined a vocal, public movement demanding peace … These were women who woke up one day and said, “Enough, enough. We’re better than that …  I know that the suffering of the people of Liberia has been broad and deep. But now, you each have a chance, both personally and publicly through your service here, to make a stand against the past and for a future that is worthy of the sacrifice and the suffering that went on too long. The United States is proud to support you.


Her 2009 visit to Kenya comprised several important speaking engagements to which she refers:  The AGOA Forum (Clinton administration legislation), a “townterview” with Fareed Zakaria, a visit, with Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, to an agricultural research institute, and the usual ministerials.

Hillary Clinton’s Address at the Africa Growth Opportunities Act (AGOA) Forum in Kenya

Hillary Clinton’s Townterview at the University of Nairobi with Fareed Zakaria

Students greeted her with signs reading “corruption-free zone.”  At this event Hillary shared the stage with Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Maathi who led a reforestation movement in Kenya.  The issue of natural resources being decimated arose.  You may recall that in her very lengthy confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Hillary was asked a question about natural resources in Africa (it might have come from John Kerry, but I am not certain).  Immediately she responded that “Botswana comes to mind.”  Here she shared the same example.

Botswana’s national trust fund has reinvested profits from its resources into the population and infrastructure with such success that both the Peace Corps and USAID pulled out of the country since their help was no longer needed.  Hillary credits Botswana’s Five Ds for the success: Democracy, Development, Dignity, Discipline, Delivery.


Hillary Clinton at the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute

Well-intentio9ned as they were,  she notes that U.S. (and other) gifts of foodstuffs undercut the market for indigenous agricultural products.  She points to the Feed the Future Program as one that supports local produce and addresses the challenge of transportation.

Hillary Clinton With Kenyan Foreign Minister Moses Wetangula


She also met with President Kibaki, Prime Minister Odinga, and the cabinet.  There was tough talk,  to which she refers,  in this meeting but no transcript from the State Department.  The agreed-upon shared power in the government was not going smoothly. Her subsequent words with Foreign Minister Wetangula provide some insight into the tone she adopted, however.

The United States worked hard last year with Kofi Annan and the team of African Eminent Persons to support the Kenyan people to resolve the crisis that afflicted this country. Unfortunately, resolving that crisis has not yet translated into the kind of political progress that the Kenyan people deserve. Instead, the absence of strong and effective democratic institutions has permitted ongoing corruption, impunity, politically motivated violence, human rights abuses, and a lack of respect for the rule of law.

These conditions helped fuel the post-election violence, and they are continuing to hold Kenya back. The reform agenda agreed to by the coalition government and discussed in the speech that President Kibaki and Prime Minister Odinga gave this morning must be fully implemented not just to avoid a repeat of the previous crisis or worse, but more importantly, to set the stage for a better future, a future worthy of the dynamic people of this country, a future of economic growth, democratic development, social justice, and the opportunity for every Kenyan child to live up to his or her God-given potential. I wanted the leaders to know that we respect greatly the way that the Kenyan people pulled their country back from the brink of disaster once, and the ongoing connection between the private sector, civil society, and the government that is the key to resolving these issues.


Hillary’s description of her visit to Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in summer 2009 is a contrasting patchwork of horror and hope.   She begins with her visit, with NBA star Dkembe Mutombo to the pediatric unit he built and named for his mother.

Hillary Clinton at the Biamba Marie Mutombo Hospital and Research Center

There were so many bright and lovely moments on this first official State tour of Africa.  Most of those were, sadly, not covered by the media, but no one missed the “snap in the Congo.”  In an atmosphere that Hillary describes as sour with an air of sullen resignation in a stuffy auditorium at St. Joseph’s School. everyone saw her lose patience with a question, remove her earbuds, and tell a student at a town hall that she would not be channeling her husband.

Hillary Clinton’s Town Hall With Search for Common Ground and Congolese University Students

U.S. Secretary of State Clinton arrives at a town hall meeting with Congolese university students in the Democratic Republic of Congo's capital Kinshasa


In the book, she explains that the student came to her after the event, apologized, and explained that he had not meant to ask her President Clinton’s opinion but rather President Obama’s.

Goma is one of the the grimmest, most dangerous places on earth, especially for women.  Hillary tells of her visit there and the spirit she encountered among the residents of the refugee settlement she visited.

Hillary Clinton’s Day at the U.N. Internally Displaced Persons Camp, Goma, DRC

She says she witnessed the worst and the best of humanity there.  She was inspired to chair a U.N. Security Council meeting the next month on the subject of sexual violence in conflict regions.

Secretary Hillary Clinton Chairing Security Council Meeting Today

Secretary Clinton & Ambassador Rice: Remarks After Meeting on the Adoption of a UNSC Resolution to Combat Sexual Violence in Armed Conflict

Hillary turns at this point to her visit to Africa’s and the world’s newest country, South Sudan in August 2012 when a standoff between the breakout state and Sudan from which it had seceded was festering.  South Sudan had oil and Sudan had the ports and refineries.  Clearly some kind of cooperative agreement would benefit both, but South Sudan had shut down the pipeline to the North.

Hillary Clinton With Foreign Minister of South Sudan Nhial Deng Nhial

Hillary Clinton in South Sudan

The surface issue was fees charged by Sudan to transport and process the oil.  Hillary used an Op-Ed by one of President Kir’s former comrades-in-arms, Bishop Elias Taban, once a boy soldier.   Below the surface, the dispute rested on old battle wounds.  Hillary told him “a percentage of something is better than a percentage of nothing.”  Taban’s words moved Kir to accept a compromise.   By 2:45 the next morning, the oil flowed again.

Hillary Clinton Welcomes Oil Agreement Between Sudan and South Sudan, Calls for Peace and Humanitarian Access

Hillary writes that South Sudan’s future remains uncertain, and indeed, while this post was being assembled the State Department issued this statement.

Bishop Taban, who provided the instrument that convinced President Kir to budge was her guest at last year’s Clinton Global Initiative where she presented him with the Global Citizen Award.

CGI 2013: Closing Plenary Session

She reviews Somalia’s war-torn, terror-ridden history and our efforts to assist through several U.S. administrations.  In August 2009, the president of the transitional government traveled to Nairobi to meet with her.  She wondered if he would shake her hand, and he did so very enthusiastically which was a very big deal all around.

Hillary Clinton With Somali Transitional Federal Government President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed

They met again for a final time in their respective official positions in August 2012.  A new president was elected the next month.

Hillary Clinton With Somali Roadmap Signatories in Kenya


At a military base in Uganda, U.S. Special Operations advisors showed her a surveillance drone used in the search for Joseph Kony chief of the Lord’s Resistance Army and elements of Al Shabaab.  She notes that it resembled a child’s toy.

Hillary Clinton at Kasenyi Military Base in Uganda


She mentions the September 2013 attack by Al Shabaab on a shopping mall in Nairobi that killed Elif Yavuz who worked for the Clinton Health Access Initiative which battles HIV/AIDS and other health challenges.

Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton Offer Condolences on the Death of Elif Yavuz

 In the struggle to conquer HIV/AIDS on the continent, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) begun by George W. Bush plays a major role.  She recalls this event in Johannesburg in 2009 where she was accompanied by Eric Goosby,  the State Department’s Global AIDS Coordinator, her Congressional Representative, Nita Lowey, and the late, Honorable Donald Payne who was a friend of this blog.

Hillary Clinton at PEPFAR Event in South Africa

Hillary declared a goal of an AIDS-free generation on World AIDS Day 2011.

Secretary Clinton on World AIDS Day 2011


Hillary Clinton at the Reach Out Mbuya Health Center, in Kampala, Uganda

Hillary begins drawing this Africa chapter to a close in South Africa around Nelson Mandela beginning with recollections of her visits to South Africa as First Lady, the second time bringing Chelsea with her.   A lifetime friendship ensued.



Hillary Clinton with Nelson Mandela

One working relationship that brought many smiles over the years was her friendship with South African Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane.   She gave parties for Hillary on both of her visits.  There was a rare snowfall on Hillary’s last visit and she was called ‘Nimkita’ – one who brings the snow.

Hillary Clinton With South African Minister of International Relations Nkoana-Mashabane


Hillary Clinton with South African Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane

Hillary Clinton’s Meeting With U.S. and South African Business Leaders

Hillary Clinton at a Dinner Hosted by South African Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane

 Hillary led a delegation of business leaders to this summit.  Our friend Grace Bennett of Inside Chappaqua accompanied Hillary’s traveling press on this trip,  and Hillary called her over to meet Maite.

Hillary Clinton at the U.S.-South Africa Business Partnership Summit


There was one last visit to Nelson Mandela.

Hillary Clinton Visits Nelson Mandela

Hillary Rodham Clinton, Nelson Mandela

Hillary Rodham Clinton, Nelson Mandela,  Graca Machel


Hillary Clinton at The United States – South Africa Partnership

She refers to these closing remarks in this speech.

It’s a burden being an American or a South African, because people expect you to really live up to those standards. People hold us to a higher set of standards, don’t they? And we owe it to all who came before, all who sacrificed and suffered, to do our very best to keep working every single day to meet those standards. But we mostly owe it to our future.

Many things have changed since Robert Kennedy came to Cape Town and Nelson Mandela left Robben’s Island. But some have not. The world we want to build together still demands the qualities of youth and a predominance of courage over timidity. So in that spirit, let us work together so that the values that shaped both our nations may also shape a world that is more peaceful, more prosperous, and more just.

Clintons Close CGI in Rio and Convene in South Africa to Honor Nelson Mandela

Hillary went on Air Force One with the Obamas and the Bushes.  Bill and Chelsea went from Rio.


Hillary ends this chapter with hopes for an Africa worthy of Nelson Mandela’s long walk to freedom.


Hillary Clinton’s ‘Hard Choices’ Retrospective: Introduction

Access other chapters of this retrospective here >>>>



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Remarks at a Dinner Hosted by South African Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane


Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Johannesburg, South Africa
August 7, 2012

Thank you, Ambassador, and once again, it is such a great personal pleasure for me to be here in South Africa around the same time as the women’s march, and to have a chance with all of you to reflect back on the many contributions that South African women made over generations to achieve freedom and opportunity and to participate and contribute to the building of this extraordinary country. And it is a great delight for me to be here with a distinguished American delegation of diplomats and business leaders, of those who are working hand-in-hand with their South African compatriots to deepen and broaden the relationship between not only our governments, but our people, and to be in the presence of so many women who are leading not only South Africa, but Africa and the world.

Just sitting at my table with my friend the Foreign Minister is the premier of this province, the new chairperson of the African Union, and scattered throughout this banquet hall are so many other distinguished and leading women of this country. I have had the great personal privilege of working with the Foreign Minister now for three years. And it has been such a productive and personally rewarding experience. I am so pleased that, as she just said, we work together in order to produce results to be effective. And Minister Mashabane is effective. She is effective and so – (applause) – grounded in the needs and the aspirations of South Africa. I always come away with a big smile on my face about everything we’ve talked about. Only a small part of it ever gets into the diplomatic cables. (Laughter.) We swear each other to secrecy.

But it is a great experience to have a colleague who is focused on making sure that we never forget why we do these jobs. Having these jobs is not an end in itself. Being a premier, a chairperson, a foreign minister – they are prestigious, they carry status, people drive you around, they protect you. But having the job is not the point. Using the job to make life better, to give chances to people who would otherwise be left behind is what I know gets Maite up every morning because that’s what gets me up every morning.

And we feel a particular obligation to women because there are still so many women – in my country, in this country, across Africa and the world – who don’t have the opportunity that they should. And so for all people, men and women and children, the real task of the 21st century is to expand that circle of opportunity. Freedom, democracy are great accomplishments of the 19th – 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries. But now comes, in many ways, the hard part. How does democracy deliver? How does it make it possible for more and more people to enter that circle of opportunity to make lives better for themselves and their families?

So in our Strategic Dialogue, we talk about the hard international issues that are on the front pages of newspapers. But we also talk about how women farmers can be more productive; how more children can be educated and more girls can go on to secondary school and university; how young men can find jobs so that they, too, can support themselves and families; how there can be that promise of democracy delivering results that is the obligation of all of us who are serving.

And this is not just for government alone, which is why I’m so pleased we had a fruitful and very important business summit between South African and American businesses, because creating opportunities in the environment for those jobs is something government has to be doing all the time. But actually doing the hard work of putting people to work, of creating value, of making it possible for entrepreneurs, to large corporations, to flourish, the private sector has to be at the table.

So the Minister and I sat and listened to representatives of South African and American businesses talk about what they were doing and how they were deepening their cooperation, and it was quite reassuring, because there are so many more ways we can work in tandem to produce results for both of our people.

So once again, it is, on behalf of my delegation, on behalf of President Obama and the Administration a great moment for me to say thank you. Thank you for the work we have done together over the last three-plus years. Thank you for what South Africa does every day as a model and a leader about what is possible for women and men alike. Thank you for the great partnership and collegiality that we have developed. And thank you for making us feel so welcome and for producing such an unusual event, snow in Pretoria in August. (Laughter and applause.)

And thank you for giving me another name. Nomkhitha will be a name that I will proudly share because I am very proud to be, on my own behalf and on behalf of my country, working with you to help us both chart the kind of future that the people we represent so richly deserve.

Thank you very much. (Applause.)

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As Paul Harvey would have said, here is the rest of the story.   Her visit is credited with bringing a snowfall for which she is dubbed “Nimkita.”

Clinton – ‘Nimkita’ – dances away in snowy South Africa

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who got on the dance floor Tuesday night in Pretoria, South Africa, has been dubbed “Nimkita” – “the one who brought the snow” – because a rare snowfall came during her visit to the nation.

On a trip designed to strengthen trade and investment relations between South Africa and the United States, she danced away the night at a dinner hosted by South African Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane. There was a lot of music and jazz singer Judith Sephuma was shaking a leg as well.

Meanwhile it was snowing. Almost unheard of in South Africa. Was it a snow dance they were doing?

Read more >>>>


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Remarks With South African Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane After Their Meeting


Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State

Pretoria, South Africa

August 7, 2012

FOREIGN MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen of the media. Secretary Clinton and I have just concluded the second Strategic Dialogue, and I am happy to say to all of you that through this Strategic Dialogue we have confirmed once again our strong political relations. And we’ve agreed that through this we would continue now broadening our economic ties, especially through strengthening trade and investment opportunities, and continuing our partnership in the fight against the spread of HIV and AIDS and on areas of global interest and concerns.

On economic ties and the strengthening of trade and investment opportunities between our two countries, we concluded a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement in June 2012. And in June 2011, trade between South Africa and the United States was valued at South African rands 130 billion. Through the TIFA, it is hoped that this figure will grow and benefit both our countries.

Currently 98 percent of South Africa’s exports enter the U.S. market duty-free and quota-free under the current dispensation of the U.S. Africa Growth and Opportunity Act, AGOA. Africa is eagerly lobbying for its extension beyond 2015. There are already more than 600 American companies. I had one company executive sharing with us in the meeting of the business community that he will, by September, be – his company will be company number 601 American company with a presence in South Africa. And I’m also pleased to note that a number of larger South African companies like Sasol, (inaudible), Sappi, Standard Bank, and Absa are investing in the U.S. economy and thus in the process of contributing to job creation for both our countries.

As you know, the fight against HIV and AIDS remains at the forefront of the South African Government’s national priorities. And today, Secretary Clinton and I worked on means to help our countries to continue our partnership in the fight against HIV and AIDS and the spread thereof through the U.S. PEPFAR program. Through PEPFAR, the U.S. has contributed over three billion U.S. dollars to South Africa from 2004 up to 2011. We remain a strong supporter of a continued partnership with the U.S. on HIV and AIDS. And I would like also to invite them to continue to their ties with people of South Africa in this regard.

The South African Government welcomes President Obama’s recently announced new strategy towards Sub-Saharan Africa outlining the foreign policy thereof. This strategy includes the following: the strengthening of democratic institutions; the spurring of economic growth, trade and investment; the advancement of peace and security; the promotion of opportunities and development for all Africans. We believe that this strategy synchronizes and sounds – and resonates very well with our five key priority areas. But it also resonates very well with South Africa’s own foreign policy priorities of putting Africa first – Africa first on peace, security, and development, on infrastructure built, inside trade, and also focusing on beneficiation of our mineral resources through manufacturing and clean industrialization. So we see a good partnership unfolding out of these two strategies.

We believe that this strategy will help if we work in close correlation with the election of Dr. Dlamini-Zuma, who has just been elected as the new AU chair, the first African woman to be elected in this position after 49 years, the first from South Africa. But we want to make sure that she continues with our support to work for the unity, development, secure Africa and African Union, and that we enhance democracy, rule of law, and prosperity, not only for the few on the continent, but as she said earlier on, for the more than 500 million women who form almost more than 50 percent of the population of the African Union of a billion people. We believe that these plans will translate into constructive and empowering relations between the people of Africa and the U.S.

From what I’ve said here, it is clear that the Strategic Dialogue has elevated our mutual relations, and we look forward to broadening and deepening our ties in the years to come. I would want to once again personally thank Secretary Clinton for the passion, for the sincerity, for the hard work she’s put in making this dialogue, this Strategic Dialogue, to be businesslike, friendly, focused, and that I would want to say with her partnership we’ve managed to achieve a lot.

And I also want to thank her for always acceding to my invitation to come to South Africa on this very special month, when we celebrate the woman’s month in South Africa. This time around, she arrives in South Africa on the eve when South African women will be celebrating the 56th year since the 1956 historic march by South African women, 20,000 of them from all walks of life marching against apartheid and past laws in this country. Once again, dear friend, colleague, welcome to South Africa.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you so much, Minister. And it’s always a great personal pleasure for me to be in South Africa. I want to compliment you on this very impressive new headquarters for your department, and I feel that it will even greatly enhance the already strong impression that people have of the leadership that is coming from your country.

I also want to express my appreciation to all of those who worked so hard on both sides to make this Strategic Dialogue a success. The Minister and I are the beneficiaries of an enormous amount of work that has gone on in both of our capitals, between our top officials, across each of our governments, and the results are commendable. So thanks to everyone who has participated and contributed.

My visit here is the centerpiece of a trip that began in Senegal, continued in South Sudan, Uganda, Kenya, and Malawi. It will conclude with visits to Nigeria, Ghana, and Benin. And at every stop, I had the same message: America wants to build sustainable partnerships in Africa. As the Minister said, this is the message of President Obama’s recently published strategy toward Sub-Saharan Africa, and it is one that I and my colleagues work every day to achieve. And nowhere is that more true or more important than here in South Africa. We are building a partnership that adds value – saving and improving lives, spreading opportunity and sparking economic growth, strengthening the institutions of democracy, and so much more.

Let me mention four focus areas: First, our cooperation in the region and beyond. We are working together on a host of difficult issues, from Zimbabwe to the Democratic Republic of Congo to Syria, from climate change to nonproliferation. And we know we won’t agree on every issue as to how something should be accomplished, but we agree on what needs to be done. So what we do, as any two friends and certainly any two nations who share common values and common perspectives, is to work through all of the issues before us. We are forming a working group on global and African affairs to bring senior officials from our government together regularly to take our cooperation to the next level. I’ll have an opportunity to speak at greater length about these matters tomorrow in Cape Town.

The second is our work to expand our economic relationship. We already have strong two-way trade, but we can and must do better for both of our nations and people. That’s why the United States is committed to helping South Africa grow your economy, and I’m pleased that our Export-Import Bank and South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation have signed a $2 billion agreement to provide credit guarantees to stimulate the growth of South Africa’s renewable energy sector. And a new partnership between USAID and the South African-based firm Cadiz will make up to $150 million available to small-and-medium-sized businesses in South Africa with the hope of creating more than 20,000 jobs.

We also recognize that strengthening South Africa’s education system, like in any country, is essential to your economic future. So we are launching the school capacity innovation program to fund the scale-up of new approaches to teacher training, an innovative $7.5 million public-private partnership between the ELMA Foundation, USAID, J.P. Morgan, and designed in collaboration with the South African Department of Education. I’m also announcing today a $500,000 opportunity grants program, which will help talented South African students who need financial assistance to study in the United States by covering visa testing and application fees, as well as international travel. One of the most heartbreaking things I see from time to time as Secretary of State are meritorious students around the world who get admitted into our very competitive universities and then don’t have the money to come. So we want to help those in South Africa who find themselves in that position.

The third area is our shared fight against HIV/AIDS. As the Minister has said, we’ve committed and invested billions of dollars over the last seven or eight years. And together, the United States and South Africa have saved the lives of hundreds of thousands of South African men, women, and children. Now, we know that South Africa’s ready to take the lead, and under the framework that will be signed tomorrow, South Africa will be increasing its own investment and taking more responsibility for managing this epidemic. I’ve spoken at length about our goal of achieving an AIDS-free generation, and we will see this fight through to the end with our partners and with the leadership and the model that South Africa is setting.

The final area is expanding our cooperation into new issues and is quite a list. I welcome the decision by South Africa’s Department of Science and Technology to join the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, a major public-private partnership that was launched two years ago to help 100 million households adopt clean cookstoves and fuels by 2020. We’re also creating a new cyber working group to identify the common cyber threats and national priorities to build capacity to fight cyber crime and coordinate in international forums.

We’re also working to enhance gender equality, an issue of special importance not only to the Minister and myself, but especially during this month when South Africa celebrates the many, many contributions that women made against apartheid and the fight for freedom. I’m delighted to announce that South Africa’s Minister of Women, Children, and People With Disabilities has confirmed her nation’s commitment as a founding member to the Equal Futures Partnership, an initiative that fosters women’s political participation and economic empowerment by bringing governments together with multilateral organizations, the private sector, and civil society.

Finally, I want to say a brief word about an issue that doesn’t get nearly enough attention in the world, and that’s child marriage. This is an issue that the Elders have taken on. And it’s good that they have, because an estimated one in three girls in the developing world are married before the age of 18. That means they are less likely to get an education, more likely to encounter life-threatening health problems, which shortchanges and shortcuts them and sometimes their lives, and robs their communities and their countries of their skills and talents.

Yesterday, when I had the great honor and personal delight of visiting Madiba, I talked with Graca Machel at their home about the commitment that the Elders, of which she is a member, has made. And I support the Girls Not Brides partnership founded by President Mandela. The United States will intensify our diplomacy and development work to end child marriage, and it’s a personal commitment of mine as well as a great value that South Africa, the United States, and so many people around the world share.

So Minister, we have a full and formidable agenda, but we’re chipping away at it, and I believe that both of us plus our teams are more than up to it. But again, thank you for your warm hospitality here, and I’m delighted to have this chance to see you again on a personal level and to trade ideas on the important opportunities and challenges facing us.

MODERATOR: Thank you very much, Excellencies. Now I know ideally, we should be taking 40 questions, but we only have time for four, so let’s start. Anne Gearan from Washington Post, and (inaudible). Let’s take the first two. There’s a microphone there.

QUESTION: Hello. Madam Secretary, does the defection of the Syrian Prime Minister spell the end of the Assad regime? If so, what is your prediction for how long Assad can hold on? Looking ahead to your meetings in Turkey, can you tell us a bit about whether you’re considering new assistance to the rebels or the Syrian opposition?

And to the Minister, is South Africa now prepared to support new action at the UN Security Council, such as sanctions? Thank you.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, let me begin by saying that of course, we noticed the Prime Minister’s defection yesterday. That’s the latest in a line of such defections. And the opposition is becoming increasingly coordinated and effective. It now reportedly holds territory from northern Aleppo to the Turkish border. It’s also seized regime weapons, including tanks. And it is a very difficult time for the people of Syria who are caught in this terrible violence.

But I hope that we will look at the urgent tasks that I think confront the people of Syria and the international community and think through how we can address them. First, we must figure out ways to hasten the day when the bloodshed ends and the political transition begins. We have to be sure that we’re working with the international community to bring that day about and to be very clear of our expectations of both the government and the opposition about ending the violence and beginning the political transition.

Second, we’ve got to address the desperate humanitarian needs of those suffering inside Syria and those who have fled. These are growing by the day. The UN and neighboring countries are asking for more assistance, and we have to work together to meet their needs.

Third, I do think we can begin talking about and planning for what happens next, the day after the regime does fall. I’m not going to put a timeline on it. I can’t possibly predict it, but I know it’s going to happen, as does most observers around the world.

So we have to make sure that the state’s institutions stay intact. We have to make sure that we send very clear expectations about avoiding sectarian warfare. Those who are attempting to exploit the misery of the Syrian people, either by sending in proxies or sending in terrorist fighters, must recognize that that will not be tolerated, first and foremost by the Syrian people.

We have to think about what we can do to support a Syrian-led democratic transition that protects the rights of all Syrians. We have to figure out how to support the return of security and public safety and how to get their economy up and going. As you know, I’ll be going to Istanbul to discuss these issues with the Turks.

But the intensity of the fighting in Aleppo, the defections really point out how imperative it is that we come together and work toward a good transition plan. And I would hope that everyone would recognize that the best way to get there quickest is to stop the fighting and begin a political transition to a better future for the Syrian people.

FOREIGN MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Well, I think Secretary Clinton has responded largely to your question. South Africa’s position is and has always been that no amount of bloodshed would ever take the place of a political solution to the crisis in Syria and everywhere else where a nation finds itself with an internal conflict brewing.

And as Secretary Clinton had said, we all are yearning with the people of Syria for a Syrian-led return to normalcy. And what would hasten that would be how do we hasten the end of bloodshed, how humanitarian organizations are given space to do what they expected to be doing. South Africa has always been say – condemning violent attacks from both sides, from both the opposition and government, and use of force on ordinary civilians.

So the solution to the crisis in Libya – I’m sorry, in Syria – is going to be political. And the sooner we quicken our steps as the international community to support these people of Syria, the better. But nothing will ever take the place of the Syrians themselves coming up with a made-in-Syria solution to their problem, supported by the international community.

So South Africa’s position yesterday, today, and tomorrow remains the same. While we is going to be supporting sanctions and this and that, reality is the Security Council had had several discussions on these matters. As Secretary Clinton has said, we all agreed this carnage has to stop. We always been grappling with the how we should quicken steps, how we should help the Syrian people to resolve this problem, supporting largely the Arab League and the GCC Council in their own region to resolve these problems.

Thank you.

QUESTION: (Inaudible) from SABC. I just wanted to find out if there’s any conclusion that has been made on AGOA, whether it will be extended. And if so, to – what would be the timeframes?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, I can tell you that the United States is strongly committed to extending the African Growth and Opportunity Act. It is the centerpiece of our policy, and we want to see South Africa included in an extension. We’re going to start working on this when the new Congress comes in after the elections this year. So I can promise you our best efforts to make the case to get it extended, to make sure South Africa is included in it. That’s the position of the Obama Administration, and we’re going to do our very best to make sure that is done.

FOREIGN MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: I think just on this issue, we welcome this commitment that comes from President Obama’s Administration brought to us through Secretary Clinton and would want to take this opportunity to thank your Administration for that, but also to just say that looking at the kinds of goods and services that enter the American market through this Africa Growth and Opportunity Act, we are just but beginning to diversify the beneficiated goods and services that enter that market, taking advantage of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act – reality is South Africa with relative know-how in value add if you remove us on the list. So you remain with still commodities entering the American market through the AGOA process, and that does not necessarily strengthen the pronouncement that was made by President Obama on the outlook of the future strategic vision on how the American Administration would want to engage with Sub-Saharan Africa.

Thank you.

MODERATOR: Last two questions, Anne Look, Voice of America, and Nicolas (inaudible), the Business Daily. Those will be the last two questions.

QUESTION: Hi. In light of the summit going on in Kampala today and tomorrow, I just wanted to turn quickly to the ongoing violence in the DRC. Rwanda and Uganda have been accused of supporting the M-23 rebel movement, and the U.S. has cut off military aid to Rwanda. I’m just curious, how far is the U.S. willing to go to cut off outside support for the rebels? And what could you tell us about your meetings during your visits of the past two days with regional leaders?

And then to the Minister, you talked earlier about Africans finding – Africa finding solutions to African problems. So I’m just curious what you’re hoping to see come out of this summit. What are your hopes?


FOREIGN MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Which summit are you referring to?

QUESTION: The Great Lakes.


SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, first I have discussed the issues about the ongoing violence in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo with every official I have met, because we view this as a serious threat to regional security and stability. I do want to commend the meeting that is being held in Kampala. The decision by Rwanda, Uganda, and the DRC to resume talks is an important step. We hope that these talks will be guided by the principles of restraint and mutual respect for sovereignty. Because M-23 is certainly the most active, well-known armed group threatening the people of eastern Congo today, but not the only one. There has been a steady trail of rampaging violence – rape, killing, and terrible human rights abuses – over the last several years by renegade criminal bands.

And we support the efforts of the DRC, and we urge all the states in the region, including Rwanda, to work together to cut off support for the rebels in the M-23, to disarm them and to bring their leaders to justice. I think it’s imperative that we move quickly to act on whatever decisions come out of the summit in Kampala. So we will await a report from that, but President Museveni certainly assured me that he was going to work toward such a resolution.

FOREIGN MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Well, a few days ago, I hosted the SADC Ministerial Committee on the Organ on Politics and Security. There were about 50 ministers in this room from all over SADC. Four of SADC members are also members of the Great Lakes region. We took opportunity of that meeting to receive a report on what’s taking place in – at that – the security developments or insecurity along the east part of Congo, and all informed further by the report that is for public consumption from the UN Security Council about the level of insecurity in that area.

That meeting concluded that we needed to send a security analysis team into the DRC, into the neighboring countries, on a fact-finding mission. We have received their report. They’ll also be reporting or presenting their findings into that meeting that you had referred to of the leaders of the Great Lakes. So both leaders from the Great Lakes and leaders of SADC are looking forward towards a positive outcome of the meeting of heads of states of the Great Lakes, four of which, as I said earlier on, also belong to SADC.

What are we asking for? That the DRC be given an opportunity to rebuild that country peacefully, and that they remain a secure area or country, that they focus on issues around development and sustainability of (inaudible) in that particular area. We owe this, all of us, as neighboring countries and regions around the DRC, but also to work with of the people of the DRC to capacitate institutions of security and generally of governance. That’s what we hope to achieve with this.

The SADC summit that will be taking place in less than a week’s time in Maputo would also be receiving a report and also further making recommendations on how SADC and the Great Lakes, and indeed, broadly, the African Union, talking about African solutions for African problems. We will always look forward to the support of the international community. But international community should not find us folding our arms and not knowing how to figure out on how to deal with our own backyards. So these are the steps that leaders in this region have taken, widen the (inaudible) support from friends like the U.S., as Madam Secretary had said early on.

MODERATOR: Last question.

QUESTION: (Inaudible.) Can I ask both of you what impact the strong growth in relationships between both South Africa and Africa and China is having on your relationship between South Africa and the United States? What is the impact of that growth?

FOREIGN MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: We – from the South African point of view is that we look at compatibility and collaboration, and we agree with both of our partners in the U.S. and China that the time for just focusing on extraction of mineral resources of our continent to take somewhere else has ended, that leaders of this continent would want partners to come in and work with us to beneficiate on our natural resources, which will (inaudible) manufacturing and bring about clean industrialization.

We were in China a few weeks ago and President Zuma was very, very clear when he participated in the focus meetings as to the un-sustainability of extractive industries that don’t look at beneficiation. And we got a commitment even there that this is what we expect. We think that it makes business sense for both American companies and wherever else, that now that the African continent has become the second-fastest growth point, it’s good to do business with the African continent in a just manner, because you are assured of good returns for your good investments. So we love this love affair that’s growing. It’s welcome, from both east and west, as long as we agree on the terms as determined by us, that our partners support, that which the African leaders are seeing and have committed to.

What do we promise in return? Good governance, transparency, rule of law, don’t bribe; there will be no bribe-takers, so that we continue to bring about skills development, we grow the economies, we change the lives ordinary – of ordinary civilians in Africa for the better. And because it’s the women’s month, yes, in particular for women of this continent, who were never given an opportunity to become main participants in the economic well-being of their continent.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, first, from the United States perspective, we brought a large, distinguished business delegation because we want to see more U.S. companies investing in South Africa. It’s a regional hotspot for innovation and entrepreneurship. As the Minister said, we already have 600 companies doing business here. We’re about to apparently have the 601st, and I want to see many more in the months to come.

And when our companies do invest, we want to make sure that it is the people of South Africa that reap the benefits, that our companies are good stewards, that the economic opportunities we help to create generate broad-based prosperity. We don’t want to see the benefits, the bulk of the benefits of our economic engagement, to go to a small group of elites or to foreign companies. We want it to empower people in line with the aspirations of the South African Government and people. And I would echo the minister’s point, especially women and young people.

So part of what we talked about in our business roundtable today was how American businesses can bring skills to be transferred to provide education and skill training for young South Africans. For example, the representative from Boeing said air travel’s going to explode in South Africa and across the continent; we’re going to need engineers, mechanics, all kinds of trained people in order to support that expansion. And that’s just one example of the kind of partnership we are seeking.

And I would only add that it’s only natural for South Africa to want to expand trade with everyone in the world. It would be political malpractice if the government did not seek out economic opportunities everywhere. The United States does the same. We trade all over the world, including in China. Competition and increased trade are good for the global economy, and that’s especially important when we’re all trying to catalyze additional growth coming out of the slow-down.

What we ask for, and what I think you heard the Minister saying, is let’s be sure we have a level playing field. Let’s be sure we have rule of law, that contracts are respected, that intellectual property is protected, that we have the rules of the road, so to speak, up to international standards and norms. And as an emerging economy and a democracy, South Africa brings so much to the global economy. So our hope is that we will see growth that is broad-based, that creates inclusive, sustainable prosperity in South Africa, that also benefits much of the rest of the continent and even beyond, but that it will also set the standard for what it means to be making investment and doing business in an economy, in a democracy like South Africa.

So I think we’re all on the same page. Thank you.

MODERATOR: Thank you very much. That concludes the press briefing.

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Remarks at the Signing of the U.S.-Mexico Transboundary Agreement


Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Los Cabos, Mexico
February 20, 2012

Good morning. It’s a great pleasure to be here for the signing of this groundbreaking agreement. And I am honored that President Calderon is here with us. Thank you, sir, for being here. It is under your leadership and the leadership of President Obama that we pursue this important agreement. And I want to thank my friend and colleague, Secretary Espinosa, with whom I have worked very closely over the last years, for all of her important participation. And thanks, too, to Secretary Herrera and Secretary Salazar and all of our teams who worked tirelessly to achieve this.

I often say that foreign policy must deliver concrete results for the people of our countries, and today we are doing just that – following through on the commitment that Presidents Calderon and Obama made in 2010 to improve energy security for both countries and to ensure a safe, efficient, responsible exploration of the oil and gas reservoirs in the Gulf of Mexico.

At a time when we are working hard to both secure energy supplies and shift to more environmentally appropriate means of extracting fossil fuels, but also adding immeasurably to our search for renewable energy, this agreement is a win-win. These reservoirs could hold considerable reserves that would benefit the United States and Mexico alike.

But they don’t necessarily stop neatly at either of our maritime boundaries, which could lead to disputes that would then interfere with our countries and companies doing the hard work of discovering what is available to us. If a reservoir straddles the boundary, then there would be disputes over who should do the extraction and how much they should extract. The agreement we sign today helps prevent such disputes. It also helps promote the safe, efficient, and equitable exploration and production of cross-boundary reservoirs. Each country maintains its own right to develop its own resources.

But this agreement creates new opportunities. And for the first time, American companies will be able to collaborate with PEMEX, their Mexican counterpart. In tough times like these, we need to make the most of every opportunity to create jobs, to foster economic growth and energy security, while managing our resources and our environment responsibly for future generations.

Our actions today are further proof of how Mexico and the United States come together to solve shared challenges. From our earliest days, the Gulf of Mexico has been a source of unity for our peoples and our countries. And the steps we are taking today will help make sure it remains that way for decades to come.

Again, thank you very much to all who helped make this agreement a reality. (Applause.)

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These pictures were taken during yesterday’s sessions shortly after her arrival, but were not published until today.  There will be more pictures later from today’s events, but I thought some people might be needing a Hillary-fix about now.  We see her with her counterparts Patricia Espinosa of Mexico (the host), Jonas Gahr Stoere of Norway, and Maite Nkoana-Mashabane of South Africa.

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Remarks at U.S.-South African PEPFAR Partnership Framework Agreement Signing Ceremony


Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
South African Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
December 14, 2010

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.)

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Delightful! Women should run the world!

Remarks at Signing Memorandum of Understanding Establishing the U.S.-South Africa Dialogue

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
South African Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
April 14, 2010

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, this is such a great personal pleasure for me to welcome my friend and colleague, the foreign minister of South Africa. And I just can’t thank her enough for the gracious hospitality that she extended to me when I first came shortly after her tenure began and we were both new foreign ministers together. I cannot match the wonderful dinner, dancing, and singing she made me do when we were together. (Laughter.) But I could give her a meal, at least. (Laughter.)
The partnership between the United States and South Africa is grounded in mutual respect and mutual interest. We have a lot to learn from each other and we have so much we can accomplish together. South Africa’s leadership is critical to the prosperity and security of the South African people and to Africa and the world. Its sound fiscal policies and commitment to sustainable economic development provide a model for the region. And South Africa’s willingness to embrace political reconciliation and adopt a modern and progressive constitution, to diversify its economy, to empower women as citizens and entrepreneurs, and to work with its neighbors to advance regional stability, have all contributed to expanded trade, rising investment, new jobs, a dynamic economy, and a more equitable society.
During my visit last August, the foreign minister and I discussed launching a strategic dialogue that would expand bilateral cooperation and engage our entire governments. So in between the times we were meeting, there would be a lot of work going on to develop relationships, to identify areas of mutual concern, problems that we could work on together. And I’m pleased that today, we’re taking a significant step toward making that vision a reality.
This memorandum of understanding represents the breadth of our partnership and the strength of our friendship. It establishes the framework, guidelines, and priorities for a strategic dialogue that will focus on the full range of our common concerns, including but not limited to health, education, food security, trade and investment, nonproliferation, and disarmament. This is the culmination of a very productive year.
As a member of the G-20, South Africa is a crucial economic player. And we have worked together to respond to the worldwide recession. Last year in Pretoria, the minister proposed establishing a joint business council to strengthen our bilateral, economic, and trade relations. And in September, during the Corporate Council on Africa meetings, we reestablished the U.S.-South Africa Business Council through another memorandum of understanding.
Energy continues to be a key concern for both our nations. Secretary of Energy Chu and South African Minister of Energy Peters have signed an agreement to boost cooperation in research and development of nuclear energy. And just two days ago, Minister Peters and Deputy Secretary of Energy Poneman launched U.S.-South Africa energy dialogues. And our teams also worked closely together at the climate change talks in Copenhagen.
And I’ve never had the chance to say this publicly before, Minister, but President Zuma played a very constructive role, both in the large meetings and in that very small meeting that President Obama and I crashed that – (laughter) – led to the accord that came out of Copenhagen. But President Zuma was extremely helpful in that process.
Last fall, we launched a nonproliferation and disarmament dialogue which laid the groundwork for our successful collaboration at this week’s Nuclear Security Summit. And we were, again, very pleased that President Zuma could participate in this excellent summit, and I was a participant in the bilateral meeting between our two presidents on Sunday. And as one of only – I think one of the only nations that have voluntarily dismantled its nuclear arms program, South Africa brings great leadership to this cause.
We’ve continued to work together on HIV/AIDS, especially through PEPFAR, and we are collaborating closely on security for the upcoming World Cup. And President Obama was very proud to tell President Zuma that we know that the largest number of tickets bought so far from outside of South Africa are Americans. So we are looking forward to that. And later, I will ask the minister to sign with me a soccer ball as a surprise gift to one of my aides who is soccer-crazy and is going to the World Cup. (Laughter.)
So thank you, Madam Minister, for your leadership, and I look forward to working closely with you and strengthening the ties even more between our two nations.
SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you very much.
FOREIGN MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Thank you. Thank you. Well, Your Excellency, Madam State Secretary, Hillary, friend and colleague, permit me on behalf of our government to congratulate you on the successful nuclear summit convened by your good self and President Obama.
I would like to take this opportunity to once again – to assure you of our government’s commitment to ensuring that this collaboration with your good country and other stakeholders, important stakeholders who came to the summit achieved – that we all achieve the ultimate goal of disarmament, nonproliferation, most importantly, the peaceful use of nuclear energy. That can be attained if we work together. I’m quite pleased with the work that our Energy Secretary and Minister Peters have so far committed to.
I would also want to say to you that I’m very pleased that your good self, as the State Secretary, and I could schedule time to meet, though we’re still recovering from this hectic schedule for the past two days with our bosses, following on – also on the sidelines of this very important summit, a very, very important bilateral meeting that our two presidents held. It was, for the first time in the 10 months of President Zuma’s ascent to the leadership of South Africa, that would come to this wonderful country and have President Obama saying we are here with you for the long haul, we will be here with you, we will support your five key priority areas, and make sure that your government succeeds, that we will continue to work together in the multilateral fora.
This I’ve never had before where there is unconditional commitment to work with us to make South Africa, our region in Africa, a better place for security and development. I can assure you that we’re quite pleased that you’ve sent us one of your very best ambassadors. (Laughter.)
SECRETARY CLINTON: That’s what he told you to say.
FOREIGN MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Yeah, yeah, yeah. (Laughter.) See, it’s one thing to try and encourage the ambassador to do his work, but (inaudible) find him ready. I can also tell you that he attends all our important parliamentary sessions. I always look out and see him sitting there listening attentively. So he’s really a good friend of South Africa. I also want to take this opportunity to say to you, a good friend, that we’ve completed our processes of selection of an ambassador to come and represent us. And I can assure Ambassador Gips that he’s equally a good match for him. (Laughter.)
I’m also quite heartened by the fact that as we work together to keep Africa safe and a place where development will take place unhindered, we also hope to achieve our millennium development goals working in partnership with you. I am really quite heartened by the warm rapport that you and I have established in this very short period of time that have been working together. And I am committing myself to continuing working with you. As I said as I was signing the book there, to use both our passions and our love for our people to improve the lot of our people in both countries.
The MOU that we are signing today of strategic dialogue between ourselves will help us to continue to coordinate activities of all our departments, and above everything else, to just do a catch-up of the time lost. You know what I’m talking about. Our working groups have not been good to do at what they had intended to, and among the working groups that will be working under us from other (inaudible) departments, key to them would be health, as you said, education, working with you to get access to your technology in improving the lot, particularly yield per hectare in terms of agriculture, to reach out to (inaudible) produce, but also to improve on rural development. Because South Africa, Africa has the potential to provide food security to our people in the continent, but also to the world. We really cannot continue to become the net importer of food products when our people are best in doing exactly the same.
I really don’t want to waste our time in repeating the good words you’ve said about the collaboration and cooperation that took place between our two presidents in Copenhagen. (Inaudible) when you called that strategic tactics, it had to have been. So the accord came into being and actually saved the day, because if it didn’t happen, our people would have come back home empty-handed.
I want to repeat, Madam Secretary, that we look forward to continuing working with you, indeed, in our peace efforts, particularly conflict resolution and post-conflict reconstruction in many of our countries in Africa. And we think that your commitment to work with us would help us achieve that through the AU mechanisms.
Yes, we wish we could receive President Obama in South Africa. When our two presidents met, he said – President Obama said he really would have loved to be part of this soccer spectacular. I call it our greatest party, the greatest spectacle that will be taking place for the first time on African soil, where South Africa chose just to be the theater. And we’re pleased that with this partnership, the Americans have chosen to come to Africa in large numbers, but we would have been pleased if President Obama could come. I remember him saying that if – he would maybe consider coming if the American team goes to the quarterfinals – (laughter) – might come if they reach the semifinals and will come if they are —
SECRETARY CLINTON: I was a witness. (Laughter.)
FOREIGN MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: But we will appreciate that, even if he doesn’t afford to come because of other commitments. We would be more than keen to receive the Vice President. He didn’t put any conditionalities. (Laughter.) I’m sure he would be happy just to be there and be part of this excitement. We are really quite pleased that, like a true friend, you’ve reached out to us to help us as we prepare particularly the security sector, preparing for a incident-free (inaudible) World Cup in South Africa. And we are quite happy – our security sector is very happy with the collaboration that we are getting from your good selves.
As for South Africa’s performance, Bafana Bafana, President Zuma says he still hope and wish and believe that Bafana Bafana can surprise many skeptics and remain just there, but – well, if all goes well, maybe we’ll see the finals between Bafana Bafana and the Americans. (Laughter.)
Once again, dear friend and colleague, let me thank you most heartily on behalf of myself and our delegation that within seven months since you came and celebrated with us, the Women’s Day in South Africa, and that we were blessed with the presence of many of our stalwarts and veterans of the women’s struggle for emancipation – (inaudible) emancipation in South Africa, they are still talking about your warmth and the time they spend with you. I don’t get to invite them every day. They don’t accept my invitation all the time. I took advantage of your presence and we had good fun.
I believe that there’s just so much passion and energy, as I said, to work for people that, in hardly seven short months, here we are, coming in here today to sign this very, very important MOU, which really would assist us to accomplish a lot in making sure that we coordinate all the work done by our (inaudible) departments to make sure that this relationship realizes its full potential.
Let me say in closing that – count on me to continue supporting you on your efforts in Haiti. We’re also trying to do our bit because Haiti means a lot to many of us in the African continent – the first republic run by black people in the Western Hemisphere 200 years ago. They remain a torchbearer for us and we don’t want Haiti to sink. But in you as their neighbor, we think they will not. And count on us to support you.
(Inaudible), when you thank a good friend for hospitality, you say (inaudible). In my mother tongue, we say (inaudible). All I’m saying is that I’m going to become a regular visitor, so remember that – just to remain patient with me, because you and I have a lot to do together. I thank you.
SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you so much.
MODERATOR: The Secretary of State and the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation are signing a memorandum of understanding for the establishment of a bilateral strategic dialogue between the Government of the Republic of South Africa and the Government of the United States of America.
(The memorandum of understanding was signed.)

Here is a fact sheet issued by the State Department about the memorandum and dialogue.

U.S.- South Africa Strategic Dialogue

Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
April 14, 2010

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, on April 14, 2010 in Washington, D.C., signed a Memorandum of Understanding laying out a framework for a Strategic Dialogue between the United States and South Africa. Secretary Clinton and Minister Nkoana-Mashabane proposed the creation of this mechanism last year during the Secretary’s visit to South Africa. The Strategic Dialogue will reinforce cooperation in key areas, such as health, education, food security, law enforcement, trade, investment, energy, and nonproliferation.

Secretary Clinton and Minister Nkoana-Mashabane will lead the Strategic Dialogue, which will be informed by meetings of the Annual Bilateral Forum (ABF).

The Annual Bilateral Forum will meet annually in Pretoria to review the work of various existing and potential bilateral issue-based working groups and to identify goals for our bilateral relationship. The next forum is scheduled for May 12-13; the U.S. delegation will be led by U.S. Ambassador to South Africa Donald Gips. The following points detail existing structures and specific plans to move forward:

* In August 2009, the United States and South Africa launched a Nonproliferation and Disarmament Dialogue.
* The U.S. Department of Energy and the South African Ministry of Energy signed an agreement on Cooperation on Nuclear Energy Research and Development in September 2009. An Energy Dialogue was launched on April 12, 2010.
* The U.S. and the South African Department of Health have launched discussions to develop and sign a PEPFAR Partnership Framework sometime this year.
* The U.S. – South Africa Business Council was re-established through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed during the Corporate Council on Africa meetings in September 2009.
* Broadening our bilateral cooperation to other issues, the following are expected to be discussed at the May Annual Bilateral Forum in Pretoria: law enforcement, transportation security, health, arts and cultural cooperation, education, climate change/sustainable resources – energy and water, economic development, trade and investment, agriculture, and multilateral issues.

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U.S. – South Africa Strategic Dialogue

Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
April 14, 2010

On April 14, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane signed a Memorandum of Understanding to formally launch the U.S. – South Africa Strategic Dialogue. Secretary Clinton and Minister Nkoana-Mashabane proposed the creation of this mechanism last year during the Secretary’s August visit to South Africa. The Memorandum of Understanding is intended to establish a framework for bilateral cooperation.

The Strategic Dialogue will reinforce cooperation between the two countries in key areas, such as health, education, food security, law enforcement, trade, investment, energy, and nonproliferation.

Secretary Clinton and Minister Nkoana-Mashabane will lead the Strategic Dialogue. The Strategic Dialogue will be informed by meetings of the Annual Bilateral Forum (ABF). The ABF will meet annually in Pretoria to review the work of various existing and potential bilateral issue-based working groups and also identify goals for the bilateral relationship. The next ABF is scheduled for May 12-13 in Pretoria. Ambassador Donald H. Gips will lead these meetings for the United States. A joint summary document produced by the ABF will inform Strategic Dialogue meetings, which could be held annually.


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On a completely shallow note – not even Keatsian: These two are always so cute together!

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Remarks With South African Minister of International Relations Nkoana-Mashabane


Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Presidential Guest House
Pretoria, South Africa
August 7, 2009

MODERATOR: Madame Minister, good morning. Secretary of State Madame Clinton, Madame Minister Mashabane, we welcome you to this gathering of the media during Women’s Month. Without further ado, we will now hand over to Minister Nkoana-Mashabane to make her remarks, followed by Madame Clinton.

MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Well, thank you very much. Once again, welcome to South Africa. We had very, very interesting discussions. In fact, we both agreed that we were doing a catch-up. And we have, among other things, agreed to elevate our bilateral relations to a higher level, a level of Madame Secretary and myself, to lead and coordinate our engagements between the two countries.

We have looked at areas of collaboration that we’ve had in the past which are now continuing under working groups from defense to trade and other things, but there are new issues that we have put on the agenda which are quite critical: how we should be tackling the world economic and financial crisis, but particularly focusing on issues that really affect ordinary people out there, issues around climate change and the impact on food security; looking at issues of energy security and how we should be tackling that, bringing in an element of the green energy, because the kind of resources we use to generate energy are not infinite.

We also looked at, particularly on food security, on how we should be using rural development and the technologies that your have to help expedite (inaudible) funding, particularly in South Africa and in the broader Africa.

We will continue working together, we have agreed, at the (inaudible) forum, because we both believe in human rights, and also saying that there is no separation between democracy and development, but also to allow the UN to take its rightful place again and work with us. But also, in South Africa, to continue the program of south-south cooperation and dialogue, but also use South Africa as a bridge on the north-south dialogue. We see under your leadership, Madame Secretary, a continuation of our working together in partnership, moving also into the — how we could contribute to the Middle East peace process, as we both believe that the solution there lies in the two-state solution.

But on how we can continue working together again in third countries, particularly on our experience on peace building and post-conflict reconciliation and development of all countries.

Our agenda has been long, because, as I said, all we’ve been doing in catch-up. But again, as you are coming to South Africa in the Women’s Month, we thought, yes, we should continue working together to enhance our economic and trade relations, but that it will actually be given (inaudible) much more better (inaudible) if we establish a joint business council between our two countries. But also on people-to-people relations and on issues that you and I are very passionate about, development of our women in the Women’s Month, that we bring our women closer together, and from our side we will you the progressive woman’s movement of South Africa.

Once again, welcome to South Africa in the Women’s Month. (Inaudible.)

SECRETARY CLINTON: Oh, Madame Minister, it is thrilling to be back in South Africa, and especially to have this opportunity to work with you. I have greatly enjoyed our discussions. We started off just the two of us talking, and then met with our teams. And we both shared our regret that protocol demanded that we end talking and had to stop our wonderful meeting in order to keep on schedule. But I am so delighted to be here and to be working with you.

And of course, I know there is a lot of anticipation regarding the effort to upgrade and improve our bilateral relationship and work together on important regional and global matters. But that excitement is nothing compared to the excitement that I know you feel about hosting the World Cup next year. (Laughter.) And I think that the beautifully executed Confederation Cup unfortunately didn’t end the way we wanted it to end, but it was very well done. (Laughter.) And I am told by some of the young people who are on my team, who intend to be back here for the World Cup, that they are dreaming of a Bafana Bafana-U.S. championship. (Laughter.) So if we could arrange that, that will really enhance our bilateral relationship.

I have a distinguished delegation, including two members of Congress, Congressman Donald Payne and Congresswoman Nita Lowey, as well as our next ambassador to your great country, soon-to-be-Ambassador Donald Gips. And I appreciate the warm hospitality.

The minister of international relations and I had an open, free-flowing conversation. We covered so many subjects. And we believe strongly that, under South Africa’s leadership, many of the issues that confront our world, and particularly Africa, will be much closer to being solved and resolved. We are a fellow democracies, fellow members of the G-20. We know we have to work together to build a global architecture of cooperation. Without that, many of the challenges that we face individually and together as inhabitants of this world will not be resolved.
Now, of course, we have our differences. Friends do. Families do. But with our candor and our creativity, we believe that we can, through mutual respect and mutual responsibility, translate our common interests into common actions, for the betterment of our people.

One of the traits that I think the minister and I share is a history of activism, and a history of being involved in politics. And in our present positions, we want to see the work we do translate into better lives for the people of South Africa, the United States, and indeed, the world. That’s why we’re going to deepen our ties.

We stand ready to support President Zuma as he seeks to deliver progress for the people of South Africa in the priority areas that have been established. And of course, President Obama has a special desire to work closely with President Zuma, to work closely with South Africa.

We look forward to strengthening our partnership to confront the scourge of HIV/AIDS. I have with me our very distinguished new head of our program through PEPFAR, Dr. Eric Goosby, one of the first doctors anywhere in the world to begin treating HIV/AIDS in San Francisco, many years ago.

And as we look at many of the issues that we face – we talked about them all. We talked about working together to realize the vision of a free, democratic, prosperous Zimbabwe. We worked – talked about working together to resolve the north-south differences in Sudan. We commend the work that South Africa has done through the Southern African Development Community toward a peaceful resolution to the crisis in Madagascar. And we look forward to the South African-U.S. business council creating even more opportunities for trade and exporting.

South Africa, on the international stage, is playing a more important role. And we want to work together on everything from climate change to nonproliferation. President Obama’s historic declaration of a few months ago to move toward a world of zero nuclear weapons was actually inspired in many ways by what South Africa did voluntarily. And South Africa has been on the forefront of that movement.

So there is a lot to be done. It is a formidable agenda that we face. But I know that the minister and I are interested in making sure that our two countries not only lead, but demonstrate the kind of cooperation that results in positive results for the people of the world.

So, again, Madame Minister, thank you so much.


MODERATOR: Madame Clinton, Minister, we thank you for your kind remarks. We will now ask the – even before I finish my sentence, the hands are up. We will now take first two questions from the American side, our friends, and then we will take two more questions from the South African side. May I start with Sue Pleming from Reuters.

QUESTION: Madame Secretary, (inaudible) what specifically would you like South Africa to do?

And Foreign Minister, what have you promised the Secretary in terms of Zimbabwe?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, there is no need for promises. South Africa is very aware of the challenges posed by the political crisis in Zimbabwe, because South Africa has 3 million refugees from Zimbabwe. And every one of those refugees represents the failure of the Zimbabwe Government to care for its own people, and a burden that South Africa has to bear.
So South Africa is deeply involved in working toward a complete fulfillment of the terms of the agreement that was reached to establish the coalition government. Obviously, South Africa, on the doorstep of Zimbabwe, has a lot of contacts with all of the different players in Zimbabwe. And the minister and I talked about ways we can try, productively, to create a better outcome for the people of Zimbabwe.

Now, we, as you know, are attempting to target the leadership of Zimbabwe with sanctions that we think might influence their behavior without hurting the people of Zimbabwe. And during the recent visit to the United States of Prime Minister Tsvangirai, we talked with the President, with President Obama, and he made a commitment to try to provide more help on education and health, the kinds of things that the people of Zimbabwe deserve.

So we are going to be closely consulting as to how best to deal with what is a very difficult situation for South Africa and for the United States, but mostly for the people of Zimbabwe.

MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Well, what did we promise? We promised to continue to work with the people of Zimbabwe to implement the agreement that they signed that made in Zimbabwe for Zimbabwean agreements. We want them to first track their actual implementation of the agreements. And about a week ago, a few days ago, Prime Minister Tsvangirai came to South Africa, met with President Zuma in my presence, and confirmed that they are moving forward but that he would want us to encourage the government, and particularly the president, that they move a little bit faster, so that people in that country do not lose patience on their slow pace of the actual implementation of the agreement. And he said that I should say to our good friend here on arrival that when she lands in South Africa, BBC and CNN will be broadcasting from Harare. This is one of the movements forward in making sure that you know where coalition governments – someone told me that it’s like forced marriages or arranged marriages. They don’t always work your way, but over time you get to get used to (inaudible). It’s better than no marriage, for the sake of the people of Zimbabwe.

Yes, indeed, we’ve got more than 4 million Zimbabweans in this country. And the passion that myself and Madame Secretary share is on the plight of women and children, and we feel that a full, peaceful resolution of what is going on in Zimbabwe would also give women an opportunity to reclaim their lives.

So that what we have promised each other, to work together to assist the people of Zimbabwe to move faster in the actual implementation of the agreement that they, themselves, have signed.

MODERATOR: (Inaudible.) Mary Beth Sheridan from Washington Post.

QUESTION: Thank you. Secretary Clinton, there has been a big change in South Africa’s position in the past year regarding HIV/AIDS from what had been a sort of denial position before. I am wondering, I know this is important to the U.S. Government, but will his change produce in terms of the U.S. cooperation with South Africa? You mentioned already there is — I think the largest PEPFAR program is in South Africa. So what, specifically, would his lead to?

And, Madame Secretary, if I could, U.S. officials have talked about pressing a reset button with South Africa. So, you know, improving relations that had gotten kind of chilly under the previous government. So do you see that kind of reset? And in what areas do you see change with the U.S. government, with your relations? Thank you.

MODERATOR: Could you kindly repeat the last question?

QUESTION: Sure. Can you hear me? Okay. Okay.

MODERATOR: The mike – can you move it a little bit?


MODERATOR: Closer. A little bit closer.

QUESTION: Okay. Is that better? The U.S. officials had talked about kind of setting the reset button with South Africa in terms of improving relations that had become sort of chilly under the last government. So I’m wondering if that has happened. And in what areas do you see a change? Thank you.

MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Okay. Well, let me start with the – on the HIV and AIDS, and change. I think the change that has happened is the emphasis and areas of focus. And we have agreed that we will continue to work on that. And, by the way, you will be meeting my colleague, Dr. Aaron Motsoaledi, the minister for health, and I am sure he will be better placed to outline what actually are we doing in partnership with your people to improve the lot of our people who are already affected or infected.

On the – our relations, we have historic ties and relations with the people of your country. We have agreed today that what has not been happening in the past eight years was that most of the time our relations were happening without proper coordination. The chill, I haven’t really felt it that much, but what I did feel was the lack of coordination in the work that was done by the working groups and so on and so on. And I think the zeal and the passion that you bring in this relationship, and now that we have agreed to have a proper political leadership and formal mechanisms to take this relationship forward, would really be not only exciting, but will help us to expand in our relations, and also to discover or work on the new agenda that we’ve also added to the old one that we’ve had before.

SECRETARY CLINTON: I agree completely. I think that our efforts in the first six and a half months of the Obama Administration to make sure that Africa itself is a high priority in our foreign policy, of course, recognizes the central leadership role that South Africa plays. One cannot think about making progress on so many fronts, from and health and education to conflict resolution, without working hand in hand, closely cooperating and coordinating with South Africa.

So we are not only going to formalize a mechanism for our bilateral cooperation, but I think the personal commitment that certainly I and President Obama feel toward this relationship is reflected in what the minister said.

And HIV/AIDS is one of those issues. I think that the fact that Dr. Goosby is here – I believe it might be his second trip since – he’s only been in office for a few months, and he’s been to South Africa twice, and I see him nodding his head back there – shows how eager we are to broaden and deepen our relationship with the Zuma administration. And PEPFAR stands ready to work with the South African Government in whatever way the government believes is most effective. And I will be discussing that with the health minister later.

MODERATOR: (Inaudible) South African media (inaudible).

QUESTION: (Off-mike.)

SECRETARY CLINTON: That’s a good question. We talked about AGOA, which has been one of the biggest market-opening programs in history. As you know, South Africa has taken more advantage of AGOA than any other African nation. But the minister and I discussed ways to improve and increase even that utilization, so that more products made in South Africa can enter the American market duty free.

We also talked about expanding and extending our own bilateral trade and investment and development cooperation, and we’ll be discussing how best to do that. What kind of additional agreements do we need to enhance business between our two countries? And as the minister said, we agreed to begin a U.S.-South Africa business council, and I will be speaking about that later, at lunch.

But we also talked about the challenges faced within Africa. African countries trade less among themselves than countries in any other region. The United States is a market of 300 million people. Africa has a market of nearly 800 million. Now, granted, we have a higher degree of prosperity and greater consumption, but think about developing a market of 800 million people. And yet, African countries don’t trade at all the way that it would enhance the business climate and the benefits to producers and consumers.

So, these are some of the issues that the minister and I will put on the agenda for our bilateral strategic dialogue.

MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Well, I think you’ve said it all. We need to work with your Administration to support the African development bank in, you know, providing resources, financial resources, for us to expedite NEPAD programs for the provision of infrastructure in between our countries, because that is the only way (inaudible) expedite inter-trade within the African countries. But also the conclusion of the Doha round of the WTO would also go a long way in assisting us to move forward.

On AGOA, Madame Secretary also agreed that the need to expand it to also include and support, particularly from the South African side, smaller companies, majority of them headed by women, to also gain access. So that it is not only the big companies that are accessing the American market, but also in the smaller ones, who are mainly women, that also get to join the party.

QUESTION: (Off-mike.)

SECRETARY CLINTON: That’s an interesting question. Right now, we are focused on supporting the Transitional Federal Government in Somalia against the threat of radical violent extremists, al-Shabaab, and their allies. The minister and I are well aware that al-Shabaab is recruiting young Somalis from South Africa, Australia, and the United States to become suicide bombers, to participate in their efforts to turn Somalia into a safe haven for terrorism, which the United States believes would not just threaten the Horn of Africa, but all of Africa and beyond.

And our primary focus has been on supporting the TFG, but not just militarily. Of course, the security concerns are paramount. But I was impressed by the meeting I had with President Sheikh Sharif yesterday in which he asked for assistance that would provide medical supplies, reopening hospitals, books and materials to reopen schools, so that as they gain ground against al-Shabaab, they’re able to deliver services for the people.

Now, we also are going to work to ensure that that government is democratic. They have made certain comments about their desire to have elections within the next year or two, if they are able to do so within the security environment.

So the focus we have had is on Somalia and on Somali land. Obviously, we are watching that. We are, you know, not ready to announce any policy, because we want to try to stabilize Somalia first.

MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE: Well, I think we have discussed this issue, and I think we do share the idea of the support of the Transitional Federal Government. And under the President Zuma’s leadership, we have met with President Sharif on the sidelines of the AU, and they have made certain requests to the South African Government for support. And I can say to our media people here that, as far as we are concerned, on our side, they have asked for support for training to build institutions of government, more than anything else. That’s the request we’ve got from the Somalia, the transitional government.

The AU also believes that we need to give this TFG support because we really cannot afford to have a failed state on our continent. And I think that’s what we share with your good Administration, that a failed state in the Horn of Africa is not in the interest of any part of our global village. And that’s why we are resolved to working together to make sure that we really don’t hand over this country to al-Shabaab. That’s what we are determined to do.

MODERATOR: Thank you.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (l) leaves after her meeting with  International Relations  minister, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane in Pretoria Hillary Rodham Clinton,  Maite Nkoana-Mashabane Hillary Rodham Clinton,  Maite Nkoana-Mashabane Hillary Rodham Clinton,  Maite Nkoana-Mashabane 2009_0808_clinton_nkoanamas_m 3880613807_07372360e3


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U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (L) smiles as she is welcomed by South Africa's Minister of International Relations Maite Nkoana-Mashabane at the O.R. Tambo airport in Johannesburg August 6, 2009 on her second stop in an 11-day trip to Africa. Clinton said Thursday she would press South Africa to use more of its influence to counter the "negative effects" of Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe. REUTERS/Jacoline Prinsloo/ GCIS/Handout (SOUTH AFRICA POLITICS)

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (L) smiles as she is welcomed by South Africa’s Minister of International Relations Maite Nkoana-Mashabane at the O.R. Tambo airport in Johannesburg August 6, 2009 on her second stop in an 11-day trip to Africa. Clinton said Thursday she would press South Africa to use more of its influence to counter the “negative effects” of Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe. REUTERS/Jacoline Prinsloo/ GCIS/Handout (SOUTH AFRICA POLITICS)


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