US Secretary of State forced to cancel activities in Kenya

Violet Powell
March 11, 2018

United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has cancelled scheduled events in Kenya, saying he's "not feeling well", CNN reports.

Even though the secretary's illness was not clarified by officials alongside him, it is believed that his condition is not critical.

Tillerson was up much of the previous night working the phones when President Donald Trump agreed to a meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

He was expected to hold bilateral talks with President Uhuru Kenyatta on a bewildering array of issues including trade and the war on terror.

Tillerson is on a working Africa tour that includes stops in Kenya, Chad, Nigeria, Djibouti and Ethiopia. His visit to the U.S. Embassy to meet with American diplomats was scrapped.

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Tillerson's Saturday schedule included an event for PEPFAR, the US government-funded programme to fight HIV/AIDS, a visit to American diplomats at the USA embassy in Nairobi and a wreath-laying ceremony commemorating the 20-year anniversary of the deadly al-Qaeda bombing of U.S embassies in Kenya and Tanzania which killed 224 people.

There are no indications his illness is serious.

The audacious diplomatic gambit, which was taken before consulting key confidantes including Tillerson - who was in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa at the time - left aides scrambling to catch up.

A USA embassy official said Ambassador Bob Godec andHealth Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki would attend events on Saturday morning.

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