Trump, in a letter, says he 'deeply respects' African people

Trump, in a letter, says he 'deeply respects' African people

President Trump told African leaders that he "deeply respects" that people of their nations amid ongoing controversy surrounding alleged derogatory remarks made by the president.

The US President also met with Rwandan President Paul Kagame, who is also the chairman of the AU, at the just-concluded World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos on Friday.

The letter was sent ahead of the African Union (AU) summit held this weekend in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, which gathered 55 nation leaders.

In the letter addressed to African leaders ahead of the 30th African Union Summit holding now in Addis Ababa, Trump notes that the United States "profoundly respects" the partnerships and values shared by the U.S. and Africans.

He further pledged "strong and respectful relationships" with the African countries, The Hill reported.

Trump said the issues the AU summit was addressing, including advancing trade and development, resolving armed conflict and combating corruption, were critical to the future of the African continent.

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United States diplomats have scrambled for days to address shock and condemnation after Trump's reported description of African nations "s****hole countries".

Trump denied using the expression but Democrat Senator Dick Durbin insisted he had used it several times during the meeting.

"Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will travel to Africa for an extended visit in March, and I look forward to welcoming many of you to the White House", Trump said. "We are working together to increase free, fair and reciprocal trade between the United States and African countries and partnering to improve transportation security and safeguard legal immigration".

The comment attributed to Trump was made earlier this month during a White House meeting with congressional leaders about reforming USA immigration law, particularly a federal program that promotes diversity among the country's immigrant population.

While we were demanding an apology, we certainly weren't expecting one.

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