If President Trump was hoping that the rancor provoked by his reported comment about Africa’s “shithole countries” had dissipated, the African Union’s top official made clear Thursday that it was still very much on everyone’s mind.
The semiannual meeting of African heads of state and government at the African Union’s headquarters here begins Sunday. Speaking to African foreign ministers preparing for the summit, Moussa Faki Mahamat, chairman of the African Union Commission, said Africa was not happy with the U.S. president.
“At the time of this session, Africa has yet to finish digesting the statements of the president of the United States which profoundly shocked with their messages conveying contempt, hate and desire to marginalize and exclude Africans,” he said Wednesday at the opening session of the executive council. He went on to note Trump’s other controversial moves, including the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, which was overwhelmingly condemned by a U.N. General Assembly vote.
“These remarks followed a host of others on Jerusalem and the reduction of contributions to the budget for global peacekeeping, leading one to think that multilateralism is in the midst of a grave crisis,” he added. “The continent will not be silent on this subject.”
The remarks likely presage an official condemnation at the conclusion of the summit Monday.
The new chairman of the commission may already have harbored some irritation toward the United States even before Trump’s remarks. He was invited to meet in Washington last April with