African UN envoys urge Trump to meet leaders after bad remark about immigrants
By Bimbo Ogunnaike with agency report
African UN envoys have suggested that United States(US) President Donald Trump meet with African leaders in Ethiopia this month after he was reported to have described some immigrants from Africa and Central America as coming from “sh*thole” countries.
African envoys met with US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley on Thursday, telling her that “it could be useful” for Trump to address African leaders directly when they meet in Addis Ababa at the African Union.
That meeting is due to take place on January 28-29, according to the African Union website.
The African diplomats said that South African UN Ambassador Jerry Matjila spoke on behalf of the group.
Haley said she regretted the political drama around Trump’s reported vulgar remarks at a White House meeting on immigration, according to diplomats at the UN meeting.
Trump referred to Haiti, El Salvador and African nations as “sh*thole countries” during a White House meeting last week, dismissing a congressional immigration proposal, according to those at the meeting.
During the meeting, Trump also allegedly expressed preference for accepting European immigrants from countries such as Norway.
The president has denied using that language, but others present insist he did.
Dozens of former US ambassadors to African countries have written to Trump expressing “deep concern” over his comments about the continent and warning that respectful engagement is crucial to protecting American interests.
The letter, signed by 78 former American envoys, urges Trump to have positive interactions with African countries.
The letter, dated Tuesday, asks Trump to “reassess” his views on the 54-nation continent, which it calls blessed with “almost unparalleled natural resources” and with which the US has deep historical ties.