CHARM OFFENSIVE

Trump Says He ‘Deeply Respects’ African People

President Trump has sent a letter to African regional leaders saying he “deeply respects” African people, NBC News reports. Just two weeks after provoking worldwide outrage for reportedly calling Haiti and African nations “shithole countries,” Trump stressed in the letter that Washington “profoundly respects” its partnerships with African countries and is committed to “strong and respectful relationships.” The president also promised an “extended visit” by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to the continent in March and offered his “deepest compliments” to African leaders ahead of the annual summit of the African Union on Sunday. The event is expected to be overshadowed by Trump’s “shithole countries” remark, as the African Union’s top official, Moussa Faki Mahamat, made clear earlier this week. “At the time of this session, Africa has yet to finish digesting the statements of the president of the United States,” Mahamat told foreign ministers on Wednesday, adding that the continent “will not be silent on this subject.”