President Ruto Meets US Senator Chris Coons
Written by Inka FM on 18 August 2023
President William Ruto on Friday, August 18 held talks with US Senator Chris Coons amid a push for an amicable resolution of the current standoff between the Head of State and opposition leader Raila Odinga.
In a statement, President Ruto said the senator, credited with brokering a handshake between Raila and retired President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2018, appreciated Kenya as one of the most vibrant democracies in the world.
The two leaders also held discussions on trade relations between Kenya and the US, global security issues, climate change and the progressive path of devolution in Kenya.
“Kenya is keen on enhancing its relations with the United States to expand trade and investment opportunities for citizens of both nations. This mutually beneficial partnership will extend to climate change mitigation efforts and environmental conservation,” Ruto said.
Also present were US Ambassador to Kenya Meg Whitman and Foreigner Affairs Cabinet Secretary Alfred Mutua.
Chris Coons meets Raila
The meeting comes barely a week after the Delaware senator held a similar meeting with Raila ahead of bipartisan talks between the Kenya Kwanza government and the former prime minister’s Azimio la Umoja- One Kenya coalition.
In a brief statement after the talks held in Kisumu on Sunday, Raila said he enjoyed exchanging notes with the lawmaker.
“It was a great pleasure as usual to meet and exchange notes with my friend Senator @ChrisCoons. An afternoon well spent,” Raila said in a post on X, formerly Twitter.
Coons was in the country in March this year and held talks with Raila, Uhuru and Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua over the political situation in the country that saw the opposition call for weekly demonstrations to protest against the high cost of living and alleged electoral fraud in the August 2022 presidential poll. President Ruto was out of the country at the time of the visit.
Senator Coons is believed to have influenced the decision for the warring parties to agree to bipartisan talks in May when the opposition suspended further protests to pave the way for dialogue.