Kamala Harris starts her African tour by announcing security aid in Ghana.

The US promised to assist Benin, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, and Togo in battling instabilities and violent groups.


During a visit to Ghana, Vice President Kamala Harris announced that the United States would give a total of $100 million to Ghana and four other West African nations to assist them in coping with the unrest and armed group violence there.


Harris arrived in Accra on Monday to begin a week-long, three-nation African tour.

The latest in a string of trips by the senior US officials as Washington strives to counter expanding Chinese and Russian influence on the continent. 


“President Joe Biden and I have made clear the United States is strengthening our partnerships across the continent of Africa,” she said during a joint news conference with Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo.


China has invested heavily in Africa in the past two decades, particularly in mining, infrastructure, fishing and timber, while Russia’s private military contractor, Wagner Group, is providing security assistance in other countries.


Wagner's presence in West Africa continues to worry Akufo-Addo, who claimed in December that Burkina Faso, its embattled neighbor, had hired the mercenaries.


It increases the very real risk that our continent may once more serve as the scene of a great power battle, he remarked.


Many nations in West Africa and the Sahel have been battling to put an end to armed group warfare that has resulted in humanitarian catastrophes, stoked unrest, and supported military coups in Mali and Burkina Faso.


“We appreciate your leadership in response to recent democratic back-sliding in West Africa,” Harris told Akufo-Addo.


“To help address the threats of violent extremism and instability, today I am pleased to announce $100m in support of Benin, Ghana, Guinea, Cote d’Ivoire and Togo,” she said.


According to Harris' office, this sum will be added to the $139 million in aid that the US plans to give Ghana in the 2024 fiscal year.


Harris will travel to Tanzania and Zambia after Ghana.


During the press conference, Harris was asked if her tour would include Ghana, where a measure that would severely curtail Gay rights is being debated in the legislature.


"I have raised this issue,” Harris said, adding that she felt very strongly about supporting freedom and equality for all people and that LGBT rights were a human rights issue.


According to Harris' office, this sum will be added to the $139 million in aid that the US plans to give Ghana in the 2024 fiscal year.


A legislative committee has received comments from the attorney general regarding  “the constitutionality or otherwise of several of its provisions” he added.


“My understanding … is that substantial elements of the bill have already been modified as a result of the intervention of the attorney general,” he said without giving details.


“I have no doubt that the parliament of Ghana will show as it has done in the past … its sensitivity to human rights issues as well as to the feelings of our population and will come out with a responsible response to the proposed legislation,” the president said.



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