WASHINGTON - Attorney General Eric Holder met today with commissioners of the African Union (AU) in an effort to underscore the U.S. government’s commitment to Africa, particularly efforts to promote rule of law and to combat transnational crime. This meeting is part of the second high-level dialogue between commissioners of the AU and senior U.S. officials in Washington, D.C., the first of which took place in April 2010.
“We are continuing to solidify law enforcement cooperation between the United States and the African Union, especially in the areas of counternarcotics, and the combating of terrorism, piracy, and organized crime,” said Attorney General Holder. “I look forward to maintaining these regularized dialogues, drawing on our strengths to realize our mutual law enforcement objectives.”
The AU is an intergovernmental organization comprised of 53 African countries with the stated objective of political and economic integration throughout Africa. The AU Commission, based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, is responsible for the day-to-day administration and coordination of the AU’s activities and meetings. The commission is composed of the chairperson, the deputy chairperson, and eight commissioners who oversee distinct portfolios: peace and security, political affairs, infrastructure and energy, social affairs, human resources, science and technology, trade and industry, rural economy and agriculture, and economic affairs.
Attorney General Holder met with Commission Chairperson Jean Ping and the Commissioner for Peace and Security Ramtane Lamamra. Also present was AU Ambassador to the United States Amina Salum Ali, AU Ambassador to the United Nations Tete Antonio and U.S. Ambassador to the African Union Mission Michael Battle Jr.
Previously, Attorney General Holder also addressed the AU Summit Meeting in Kampala, Uganda, in July 2010, which focused on anti-corruption, rule of law, and training opportunities as tools to combat terrorism and to promote freedom and development.