Kaljulaid would like to see closer cooperation between Europe, Africa

Kaljualid with Rwandan President Paul Kagame in Kigali, Nov. 16, 2017. Source: (Presidendi Kantselei)

President Kersti Kaljulaid met with the President of Rwanda, Paul Kagame, in the Rwandan capital of Kigali on Thursday evening to discuss co-operation in international organisations and digital sphere.

"Just as Estonia is the spokesperson in Europe on digital issues, Rwanda is an African champion in this sphere. While parcel delivery robots scuttle around in Estonia, drones flying in the skies above Kigali deliver donor blood to those in need of help, and a number of public e-governance services is also available," Kaljulaid after meeting her Rwandan colleague.

Apart from developing the digital sphere, plans led by President Kagame for reforming the African Union as well as closer cooperation with the European Union were discussed at the meeting of the heads of state. "Cooperation between the EU and the African Union in the IT sphere could be more intense, and Estonia is willing to contribute to this sector," Kaljulaid said. She expressed hope that there would be more business contacts between companies of the two countries in the near future.

Security was also discussed at the meeting. According to President Kaljulaid, Estonia and Rwanda share a similar approach to security. "Both countries know that security is indivisible, and we also contribute to creating security outside our border," stated the Estonian Head of State. The two presidents also exchanged ideas regarding their cooperation within the framework of the UN and other international organisations.

President Kaljulaid also laid a wreath and paid homage to the victims of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Soon after laying wreaths at the final resting place for more than 250,000 victims of the Genocide, Kaljulaid wrote a message of condolence.

“On behalf of all Estonian people, I offer our condolences to the people of Rwanda, to the survivors and the families of the victims of the genocide against the Tutsi,” her message read, according to the Rwandan New Times. “Unfortunately, our world is no better today – and unfortunately, while physical wounds may heal, the hearts remain broken.”

Kaljulaid commended Rwandans for their effort to overcome the “terrible period” as one unified community.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

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