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Diplomacy in Action

Diplomacy Briefing Series: 2010 Conference on sub-Saharan Africa

June 14, 2010

Date: 12/09/2009 Description: Diplomacy Series Briefing Logo: Shadow map of North America encircled by a blue ring  with the words Diplomacy Briefing Series in white letters.  © State Dept Image



"We believe that the future of Africa is in the hands of Africans. And we have to join hands to work together to develop that partnership to expand democracy that delivers good governance, promoting sustainable economic growth, improving access to healthcare, education, basic services, and working to eliminate the conflicts that destroy lives and destabilize the region." Full Text»

Assistant Secretary Carson: "I want to begin today by emphasizing the strong commitment of this Administration to working with our African partners to bring about a more peaceful, stable, and prosperous Africa. This Administration sees immense potential in Africa, and we are determined to work with Africans across the continent to help realize this promise." Full Text»
Deputy Envoy Shortley: "Special Envoy Gration was very instrumental last year in organizing the tri-party talks between North and South that helped to get to the legislation that occurred at the end of last year paving the way for the elections and the referendum and we expect to be part of that same small group of people to help both North and South get through these issues." Full Text»
Counselor Michel: "Development in its essence is the process by which nations become stable, just, and prosperous; and people benefit from increased freedom and security and rising standards of living. And while international support can support – can accelerate positive outcomes, development comes from within." Full Text»
Under Secretary McHale: "We can’t just speak. We must also listen and learn. We must ask people throughout Africa about their priorities, their perceptions, their interests, and their concerns. We need to listen to their responses and then engage them in ways that are relevant to them. Today, our embassies across Africa are using a broad array of public diplomacy strategies and programs to reach wider and more diverse audiences." Full Text»
Ambassador Verveer: "We know that in order to be fully participatory, [we need] to ensure that women can drive the progress of their countries forward--because it is a simple fact that no country can get ahead if it leaves half of its people behind." Full Text»

On June 14, 2010, the Department of State hosted a Diplomacy Conference on sub-Saharan Africa, the second in a series of public outreach conferences aimed at engaging key constituencies on foreign policy issues.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton delivered closing keynote remarks. The agenda also featured Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of African Affairs Ambassador Johnnie Carson and several other key Administration officials who will engage a cross-section of the nongovernmental community on U.S. policy and the most pressing issues facing sub-Saharan Africa.

Students from Florida A&M University (Tallahassee, FL), Texas Southern University (Houston, TX), and the University of Central Florida (Orlando, FL) joined the conference to engage Secretary Clinton via video conference.  C-Span Video: Full Conference



  • Judith McHale, Under Secretary for Public Affairs and Public Diplomacy
  • Ambassador Melanne Verveer, Ambassador at Large, Secretary of State's Office of Global Women's Issues
  • Ambassador James Michel, Counselor, U.S. Agency for International Development
  • Ambassador Johnnie Carson, Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of African Affairs
  • Timothy Shortley, Deputy Special Envoy, Office of the Special Envoy to Sudan




For more up-to-date information on U.S. policy on Africa and related releases, please visit our African Affairs homepage.

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