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 Saturday, 21 December, 2002, 00:05 GMT
Bush postpones Africa trip
US President Bush and Nigerian President Obasanjo at a Washington event honouring the late anti-apartheid campaigner Leon Sullivan
Mr Bush announced the trip in June
United States President George W Bush is postponing a trip to Africa, scheduled for January.

White House sources said Mr Bush needed to focus on domestic and other international issues, with an unnamed official saying that the delay should not be taken as a sign that war with Iraq was imminent.

I look forward to the trip... I look forward to focusing on the challenges that we must face together

Mr Bush in June
A White House statement said the trip would take place later in the year and that Mr Bush "looks forward to visiting Africa in 2003".

Mr Bush was to have visited Senegal, Nigeria, South Africa, Mauritius and Kenya between 10 and 17 January.

Washington meeting

He met the leaders of Kenya and Ethiopia on 6 December in Washington.

Mr Bush welcomed Kenya's President Daniel arap Moi and Prime Minister Meles Zenawi of Ethiopia as "two strong friends of America... two leaders of countries which have joined us to fight the global war on terrorism".

Mr Bush announced his plan to visit Africa in June at a dinner in Washington to honour the late anti-apartheid activist Leon Sullivan.

Soweto schoolchildren
US aid will provide scholarships and textbooks for African children
Mr Bush vowed that the United States would help African nations with responsible policies to help combat disease, poverty and illiteracy.

Mr Sullivan, the Baptist preacher who turned much of his attention from civil rights in the United States to South Africa's system of apartheid, died in 2001 at the age of 78.

Mr Bush also said he wanted US education aid to the continent to be increased by $100 million over the next five years.

Former US President Bill Clinton visited sub-Saharan Africa in 1998 and 2000.

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"It illustrates the depth of the crisis with Iraq"
See also:

06 Dec 02 | Africa
21 Jun 02 | Africa
27 Jun 01 | Africa
11 May 01 | Americas
18 Dec 00 | From Our Own Correspondent
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