The White House
President George W. Bush
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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
July 12, 2003

Statement on New Leadership of the African Union
Statement by the President

I congratulate President Joaquim Alberto Chissano of Mozambique on his appointment as the new President of the African Union. I also extend congratulations to President Konare of Mali on his appointment as the new Chair of the Commission of the African Union. I am confident that the African Union -- and the people of Africa -- will be well-served by the experience and vision these two leaders bring to these important posts.

Africa is a place of both great potential and daunting challenges. The United States shares the hopes of peoples across the African continent for a future of greater peace, greater freedom, and greater development. And America will work in partnership with all African nations committed to these great goals.

The African Union has the mandate and the responsibility to respond effectively to Africa's challenges, including instability, terrorist threats, challenges to the effective rule of law, HIV/AIDS, poverty, and humanitarian emergencies. I look forward to the African Union continuing to play a vital role in shaping Africa's future under its dynamic new leadership.

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