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US First Lady to Visit Namibia, Kenya

FILE: First lady Jill Biden speaks, Jan. 25, 2023, in Washington.

Jill Biden will be traveling to southern and eastern Africa, her office announced Tuesday, on five-day trip to strengthen partnerships on the continent.

Biden will travel to Namibia and Kenya from Wednesday, focusing "on the empowerment of women and youth, efforts to address food insecurity, and promoting our shared democratic values," a statement released by her office said.

Her office also said the trip is expected to advance "shared priorities in the region."

Biden's trip comes just several months after the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit hosted by U.S. President Joe Biden in Washington.

President Biden along with his vice president, Kamala Harris, made commitments to visit sub-Saharan Africa in 2023. President Biden’s first trip to the region would mark the first of a U.S. leader in a decade.

The Biden administration has expressed interest in expending Washington’s relationships with Africa. During the summit his administration pledged $70 billion to Africa over the next three years.

Since the summit, U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield have made separate trips to Africa visiting Senegal, Ghana, Mozambique, South Africa, among others.

Both Yellen and Thomas-Greenfield said their trips reaffirmed the U.S.' commitments to Africa, which included promoting trade, investments, security and humanitarian assistance.

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai and Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo are among Washington's leaders expected to travel to Africa this year.

Jill Biden's trip will be her sixth visit to the African continent, marking her first visit to Namibia and third to Kenya.