Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta For First US Visit
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta will next month travel to the United States for the first time since his election in March this year.
Kenya’s special envoy to the UN Kamau Macharia confirmed that Mr Kenyatta will lead the Kenyan delegation to the UN General Assembly, in keeping with tradition.
The meeting, to be held in three weeks, comes as the General Assembly pledged to support the work of the International Criminal Court which has cases against President Kenyatta and his deputy, Mr William Ruto.
The trip is likely to test Kenya’s relations with the world’s biggest economy.
The US had before the East African country’s March 4 election warned of unspecified consequences if Mr Kenyatta were elected president.
Observers will be keenly watching how US President Barack Obama handles a head of state facing crimes against humanity charges at the ICC.
President Obama by-passed Kenya during his recent tour of Africa that took him to neighbouring Tanzania, Senegal and South Africa on account of Mr Kenyatta’s and Mr Ruto’s indictment at the ICC.
Unconfirmed reports quoted Mr Macharia claiming that Mr Kenyatta would be visiting at the invitation of President Obama.
Efforts to independently verify the reports proved futile as Mr Kenyatta’s communication team was said to be in his delegation whose tour of China has just ended.
The US visit is barely two months before Mr Kenyatta travels to The Hague for his trial in connection with violence spawned by the country’s disputed 2007 presidential election.
The US has been at the forefront of supporting the full trial of Mr Kenyatta and his co-accused.