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U.S. Unveils New Foreign Policy Strategy for Africa That Downplays China and Great Power Competition

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken delivers a speech on the U.S.-Africa Strategy at the University of Pretoria's Future Africa Campus in Pretoria, on August 8, 2022. Andrew Harnik / AP POOL / POOL / AFP

The United States is embarking on a major shift in its foreign policy towards Africa by downplaying the need to confront China’s influence on the continent. It will instead focus more attention on democracy and governance issues.

The new approach was unveiled by visiting U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday in a speech at the University of Pretoria. In his address, Blinken mentioned China only twice (in the context of debt relief and climate change), a change from the last time Washington rolled out an Africa strategy in 2018 when National Security Advisor John Bolton referenced China 14-times in his remarks.

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