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U.S., Kenya elevate relations to strategic partnership

Staff Writer |
The U.S. and Kenya agreed to elevate their relationship to a strategic partnership.

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A statement by the White House said U.S. President Donald Trump and his Kenyan counterpart Uhuru Kenyatta affirmed the new partnership “as a cornerstone of peace, stability and good governance in Africa and the Indian Ocean region” following their meeting in Washington.

“This United States–Kenya Strategic Partnership will include an annual dialogue to advance mutual prosperity,” the statement said.

The two leaders also “reaffirmed and strengthened their commitment to continued counterterrorism cooperation against violent extremists who seek to take innocent lives and deny fundamental human rights”. In this regard, Trump welcomed Kenya’s decision to join the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS (Daesh).

They also vowed to enhance defense and security cooperation, pointing to Kenya’s recent acquisition of military equipment made in the U.S., as well as further improve the capabilities of the Kenya Defence Forces.

Kenyatta thanked the U.S. for its “continued support of the Kenyatta administration’s efforts towards greater accountability, transparency, and institution building”.

To expand their economic cooperation, Trump and Kenyatta agreed to establish a United States–Kenya Trade and Investment Working Group and announced that direct flights between Nairobi and New York City were established.

“This and nearly $900 million in other commercial deals and engagements announced during the visit are expected to create thousands of American and Kenyan jobs, further enhancing the prosperity and economic competitiveness of both nations,” the statement added.

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