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Obama Heads to Africa

President Obama will visit Senegal, South Africa and Tanzania over the next few days. This will be his second trip to the continent as president. The big focus will be on democracy, development and investment in Africa. “In South Africa, Obama is scheduled to hold a town hall-style meeting in Soweto, with youth from across the continent participating. At the University of Cape Town, he will deliver what officials call the main framing speech of his trip, about U.S. Africa policy. Trade and investment will be the focus of Obama’s final stop in Tanzania.  He will also visit a memorial in Dar es Salaam remembering those who died in 1998, when al-Qaida bombed the U.S. embassy there.” (Voice of America http://bit.ly/1abOd8x)

Mali Peacekeeping Mission Gets Final Green Light

A key meeting of the Security Council gave the final go-ahead for the Mali UN peacekeeping mission to commence on July 1. “The 15-country Security Council unanimously decided that conditions are in place to start deploying the peacekeeping mission on July 1 as scheduled, Britain’s U.N. Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant told reporters after a council meeting. The 12,640-member U.N. force will replace a 6,000-member African-led mission now in Mali. Some of the French troops who ousted radical Islamic groups from northern Mali in January will remain in the country, ready to intervene under a soon-to-be signed agreement if the U.N. mission comes under “imminent and serious threat,” said Herve Ladsous, the U.N. undersecretary-general for peacekeeping operations.” (ABC http://abcn.ws/14vS1LL)

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