Israel informs Rwandan president of plans to open embassy in Kigali

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta in Nairobi in July 2016

As reported earlier today by JOL, Netanyahu delivered a keynote address at the celebration following the inauguration ceremony of Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday.

"I informed him (President Kagame) that Israel will open, for the first time, an embassy in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda". Netanyahu told the gathering, "We believe in Africa".

"We believe in the future of Africa, we love Africa, and I deeply wish, not only to cooperate personally with each of the African countries, with Kenya and with each of the African countries, but also with the African Union", Netanyahu said.

"Delegations from four African countries have opened in Israel in the past two years and I hope that by the end of the day I will be able to announce the opening of a new Israeli embassy in an African country and the hand is still extended", he added.

This was his third visit to Africa 18 months, part of a concerted effort to deepen ties between Israel and African countries.

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Netanyahu called on the African leaders to "contend with the various challenges facing the region, including Islamic terrorism. It's good for you, it's good for us, it's good for Africa". "If we work together we will defeat the barbarians. Our people deserve better lives and we can provide that for them", said the Israeli PM.

The meeting with Kagame was part of marathon meetings that Netanyahu held on the sidelines of Kenyatta's inauguration ceremony, which included meetings with the presidents of Gabon, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, South Sudan, Botswana, and Namibia. "I hope that we will all find a way to have Israel become an observer status in the African Union because we can help, we cannot only observe, we can help build together a better future for Africa".

Netanyahu was last in Kenya in July 2016.

Seeking to deport African migrants who have arrived in Israel, Netanyahu's government has also signed deals with Rwanda and Uganda to accept departing migrants on condition they consent to the arrangement.

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