Clinton meets Africa’s first democratically elected female president
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Hillary Clinton, April 21, 2009 | TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty Images Today Clinton met with Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, president of Liberia and the first democratically elected female president in Africa. (In the file photo above, the two meet in Washington on April 21.) Clinton and the U.S. government are fully backing Sirleaf in ...
Today Clinton met with Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, president of Liberia and the first democratically elected female president in Africa. (In the file photo above, the two meet in Washington on April 21.)
Clinton and the U.S. government are fully backing Sirleaf in her run for re-election in 2011. “We have looked at the entire record that President Sirleaf brings to office. … We are supportive, and will continue to be so, because we think that Liberia is on the right track as difficult as the path might be,” Clinton said after her meeting with Sirleaf.
Liberia’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission doesn’t want Sirleaf to run because she used to back former warlord and ex-President Charles Taylor, who’s on trial in The Hague for crimes against humanity in Sierra Leone.
Sirleaf apologized last month for supporting Taylor, saying she did so to remove former dictator Samuel Kanyon Doe. “Like thousands of other Liberians at home and abroad who did [support Taylor], I have always admitted my early support for Charles Taylor to challenge the brutality of a dictatorship,” Sirleaf said in July 28 radio address.
Given the U.S. practice of backing dictators in order to challenge the Soviet Union during the Cold War, it seems like Clinton would understand Sirleaf’s logic in once supporting a warlord.
Photo: TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty Images
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