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Three Things to Watch at the First-Ever US-Africa Leader’s Summit

As presidents, prime ministers, and other policymakers from across the continent gather in Washington, DC, this week for the first-ever US-Africa Leader's Summit, what are the issues to watch?

Monde Muyangwa, director of the Wilson Center's Africa Program, sat down with ECSP's Roger-Mark De Souza to discuss why the summit is important right now.

There are three broad objectives that the United States and Africa should work more closely on achieving this week, she said: broader economic development, peace and security, and youth engagement.

Against the backdrop of West Africa combatting its largest outbreak of Ebola, stability is a prime concern. Violence in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, northern Nigeria, and South Sudan has become more entrenched in recent years, and human security remains a major problem elsewhere.

"I think those of us who have worked Africa for many years were quite happy to see a decline of conflict in Africa in the 1990s and early 2000s," Muyangwa says. "Unfortunately, what we've seen recently is that conflict is increasing in some African regions but we also see that conflict is becoming quite intractable in others."

"I think this will be an opportunity for the US and Africa to review what can be done to better enhance the ability to manage and address conflict and enhance stability on the continent."

Read the Full Post on the Environmental Change and Security Program's Blog, The New Security Beat. 

Video Credit: Wilson Center.

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Africa Program

The Africa Program works to address the most critical issues facing Africa and U.S.-Africa relations, build mutually beneficial U.S.-Africa relations, and enhance knowledge and understanding about Africa in the United States. The Program achieves its mission through in-depth research and analyses, public discussion, working groups, and briefings that bring together policymakers, practitioners, and subject matter experts to analyze and offer practical options for tackling key challenges in Africa and in U.S.-Africa relations.    Read more