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Maybe Pompeo Avoided Directly Talking About China During His Recent Africa Tour Because There’s Nothing More to Say

US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo (L), holds a press conference with Ethiopian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Gedu Andargachew (R), at the Sheraton Hotel in Addis Ababa on February 18, 2020. ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS / POOL / AFP

On his final stop of a three-nation African tour, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was in Addis Ababa on Tuesday, where he held talks with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Foreign Minister Gedu Andargachew, among others. And just as he did in Senegal and Angola, the Secretary said little about China.

In his final speech of the tour on Wednesday at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, the Secretary didn’t reference the Chinese by name, and restricted himself to only an oblique reference at the end of his address: 

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