Scratching backs with Rwandans

Scratching backs with Rwandans

Source: The Australian

Mark Dodd  

RWANDA will back the Rudd government's bid for

a UN Security Council seat in return for

Australian support for its Commonwealth membership application.

Foreign Minister Stephen Smith made the announcement

yesterday but denied that this sudden interest

in fostering stronger diplomatic links with Africa

had anything to do with the government's aspirations

for a seat on the Security Council.

A flurry of recent African VIP visits appears to be

boding well for Canberra's UN pitch.

Yesterday, it was the the turn of Rwandan Foreign

Minister Rosemary Museminali, on her first visit to Australia,

paid for out of the Department of Prime Minister

and Cabinet's "guest of government" budget.

The cost of hosting the Rwandan delegation over

its four-day visit was not available yesterday,

but The Australian can confirm

a luxury Mercedes limousine van hired

to transport the visitors will

cost taxpayers about $1500 a day.

Ms Museminali's visit follows that of

her Kenyan counterpart, Moses Wetang'ula.

Tanzania's Bernard Membe last month became

the first foreign minister from

that country to visit Australia in more than 20 years.

Rwanda is backing Australia's bid for

a temporary Security Council seat when

it becomes vacant in 2014.

In a quid pro quo, the tiny African nation gets

Australia's strong support for its bid

to become the 53rd member of the Commonwealth.

Mr Smith said Australia needed to enhance

its engagement with Africa.

"We can't ignore the economic trade and investment

opportunities that Africa provides for us,

whether it is in minerals and petroleum resources

or agriculture and other areas," the Foreign Minister said.

"And that long-term ambition transcends

any Security Council campaign we might be running."

Rwanda's name is synonymous with the 1994 genocide

of Rwandans, a three-month pogrom that left about

one million people dead.

Ms Museminali said the killing was now in

the past as Rwanda sought to attract foreign investors

from Australia and rebuild its institutions.

Source: The Australian

Mark Dodd  

             J-L K.
Procurement Consultant
Gsm:    (250) (0) 78-847-0205 (Mtn Rwanda)
Gsm:    (250) (0) 75-079-9819 (Rwandatel)
Home:  (250) (0) 25-510-4140
    P.O. Box 3867
  Kigali - RWANDA
    East AFRICA
Blog: http://cepgl.blogspot.com
Skype ID: kayisa66

No comments:

Post a Comment