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JFK Meets with Somali Premier

Nov. 27, 1962 - The Premier of the Somali Republic, Dr. Abdirashid Ali Shermarke (left), met with President Kennedy today. The occasion marked this country’s growing interest in East African affairs. The White House accorded red-carpet treatment to the 43-year-old Premier, the 10th African leader to see Mr. Kennedy this year. The President took note of his country’s changing relations to Africa in a toast at luncheon, calling Africa “a new continent for us.” “In 1957, the U.S. had as many people at our embassy at Bonn as we had in all Africa,” he said. “Now, suddenly, Africa has become one of the keystones of the whole world struggle for freedom.” Since she achieved independence two years ago, Somalia has been aided by Britain, France, and Italy, all of which had had colonial administrations in the area.

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