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5 reasons Obama's Africa summit matters

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Obama wants to make sure the United States is one of those partners, and a more attractive one than China.

"This is an uphill challenge for them," said Gayle Smith, Obama's senior director for development and Democracy, noting both Liberia and Sierra Leone had recently emerged from periods of civil war.

Other nations, namely China, have turned their focus to the continent as a trade partner. Terrorist networks have expanded their reach in some countries, most notably in Nigeria, where hundreds of schoolgirls remain at large after being kidnapped earlier this year.

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Nigeria based Boko Haram opposes western style education, and there are fears the group's influence could be crossing borders.

The most flagrant example came earlier this summer, when the group Boko Haram kidnapped more than 200 school girls in Nigeria.

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3. Countering China: The United States has some catching up to do in Africa when it comes to trade and investment.

Ebola has killed more than 700 people in three nations: Guinea, Liberia and Sierra.

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"Africa is in a Adidas Climacool Boat Lace Shoes Black very particular moment, economically speaking," said French during an interview with CNNI from Nairobi. "The continent has been growing very fast. Demographically, there's a bulge in terms of it's youth population. And Africa needs partnerships."

"We are concerned about efforts by Adidas Basketball Shoes Adiprene

But promoting commercial ties with countries engulfed in Ebola outbreaks could prove to be difficult. The State Department warned against non essential travel to Sierra Leone and Libera last week, and some schools and businesses have closed.

1. Health scare: The health problems in Africa were underscored this week when an Ebola outbreak prompted leaders of two nations to cancel their trips to Washington.

"We're looking at how do we get at the broader issue of countering violent extremism in Africa so that these groups, like Boko Haram, like al Shabaab, like al Qaeda, are not able to prey on young people with disinformation and intimidation," he said.

Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, a Nobel Peace Prize winner, and Ernest Bai Koroma, the leader of Sierra Leone, both said they would remain in their countries.

Obama said anyone who might have been exposed to the virus would be screened both in their home countries and upon arrival in the United States. aid over the years.

Obama hopes to move past the traditional elements of humanitarian aid to Africa, focusing instead on potential trade.

Last month, armed gunman suspected to be Boko Haram militants abducted the wife of Cameroon's deputy prime minister.

including Nigeria's, the largest on the continent. investment. assistance to counter militants, sentiments likely to be expressed at this week's summit.

Summit leaders, and even Obama, have stressed there is no risk to Washingtonians from those arriving from Africa this week.

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associate professor of international affairs at Columbia University. and Africa on business and investment are infrequent. So to the extent that this distracts from that I think will be regretted all around."

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"The timing is very unfortunate, and no one would have wished for this," said Howard French, an Adidas Climachill Flip Flops

terrorist groups to gain a foothold in Africa," said Ben Rhodes, Obama's deputy national security adviser. counterterror efforts that aim to partner with nations in stemming unrest.

Intra country sniping has followed. Nigeria has expressed frustration with Cameroon for not doing enough to fight Boko Haram on its side of the border, a charge Cameroon has denied.

China's imports of African oil and natural minerals have skyrocketed over the past two decades. Alongside have come massive Chinese investments in African infrastructure and construction projects, manned by waves of Chinese workers who ended up remaining in Africa. More than a million Chinese citizens now live there.

2. investment in Africa: Growing extremism on the continent, which has overwhelmed certain governments.

The unrest has inflicted damage on African economies, Adidas Climacool Trainers Review

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While plans for the first African Leaders Summit this week in the nation's capital are ambitious, the reality is the United States still has strides to make on the kind of political and economic relationships in Africa that can benefit both sides.

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