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US congratulates new AU chairperson

Feb 5, 2010, 7:43 PM

The United States of America has congratulated Malawian President Dr. Bingu Wa Mutharika, the new Chairperson of the African Union heads of state and government, a media release from the United States embassy in Banjul has announced.

Dr. Bingu Wa Mutharika was elected at the just-concluded AU summit held in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.

"On his election by the African Union General Assembly to serve as Chairperson of the African Union (AU) the US looks forward to continuing our partnership with the AU to promote peace, prosperity, and security for all Africans," the release stated, quoting a statement by Philip J. Crowley, Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs.

"We share Chairperson Mutharika’s goals of ending child hunger and malnutrition and welcome his interest in promoting the critical goal of agricultural development and food security on the continent. The U.S. stands ready to partner with the AU on promoting democracy and good governance and to ensure free, fair, and transparent elections on the continent in the coming year," it added.

The release also welcomed Chairperson Mutharika’s pledge to isolate those in Africa who seek power through unconstitutional means.

"The United States will continue to work with the African Union to confront ongoing stability challenges in Guinea, Niger and Madagascar and to further peace and reconciliation in Somalia, Darfur, Zimbabwe and the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. We also hope to work closely with our African partners to confront the scourges of sexual and gender-based violence on the continent and ensure the full participation of Africa’s women in its socio-economic development," media dispatch stated.

The release commended the AU "for its efforts to work on these issues and pledge our continuous assistance on these and other matters."