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President Niinistö to Make His First Official Visit to Africa on Tuesday; Marks the First Presidential Visit Between Finland and Ethiopia

President Niinistö to Make His First Official Visit to Africa on Tuesday; Marks the First Presidential Visit Between Finland and Ethiopia
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (left) hosting a gala dinner for the president of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa in February 2019. Picture: GovernmentZA

President Sauli Niinistö will make his first official visit to Africa on Tuesday. He will visit Ethiopia, the most populated country in the Horn of Africa, and the visit is also the first presidential visit between Finland and Ethiopia.

He will meet the president of Ethiopia, Sahle-Work Zewde, in Addis Ababa on Tuesday. In addition to bilateral relations between Finland and Ethiopia, the presidents will discuss regional and world matters.

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President Niinistö will also meet with the recently awarded 2019 Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

President Niinistö will also speak at a conference on climate change.

In addition, President Niinistö will be one of the keynote speakers at a high-level event on Women’s economic empowerment, along with President Sahle-Work Zewde and the executive director of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.

President Niinistö has been HeForShe campaign’s IMPACT Champion since 2015.

On Wednesday, President Niinistö will meet Moussa Faki Mahamat, the chairperson of the African Union Commission, and attend a lunch hosted by the Ethiopian president.

President Niinistö will also visit a local primary school supported by Finland, together with Ethiopia’s Minister of Education Tilaye Gete.

Previously, President Niinistö has visited South Africa in 2013 to attend the memorial service for President Nelson Mandela. President Niinistö’s delegation will include Ville Skinnari, the minister for development cooperation and foreign trade.

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