‘the Secretary have to cut short her trip – her visit to Addis Ababa. …The diplomatic portion of her trip was unaffected, and she did tell the Ethiopians that she was committed to coming back, but unfortunately, due to this volcanic ash cloud, she was advised to leave early.’ [State Department]
US Secretary of State cut short her stay in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and left around 1 PM London Time(10 PM Local Time) on Monday. Clinton arrived in Addis on Monday Morning and was scheduled to stay t least ’til Tuesday afternoon.
In about the same time, State Department Deputy Spokesperson Mark Toner, briefed the media as follows:
MR. TONER: Hey, everybody. Happy Monday. Just a bit of news, actually, from the traveling party before I give you a couple of statements and then take your questions. We did just receive that due to an apparent volcanic eruption in Djibouti, I believe, the Secretary will have to cut short her trip – her visit to Addis Ababa.
QUESTION: I think it was Eritrea.
MR. TONER: Or Eritrea, sorry. Thank you. Eritrea. The diplomatic portion of her trip was unaffected, and she did tell the Ethiopians that she was committed to coming back, but unfortunately, due to this volcanic ash cloud, she was advised to leave early. So –
QUESTION: When is she due back?
MR. TONER: I’m not sure, frankly. I literally just got this news before coming out here. So –
QUESTION: Is she wheels up already? Do you –
MR. TONER: No, she’s not wheels up already, but shortly is my understanding, and obviously it’s going to be a several – or at least one stop, I believe, in Europe. But again, I don’t have those details.
QUESTION: She had events tomorrow, right?
MR. TONER: She did.
QUESTION: So why was the diplomatic –
MR. TONER: Well, for example –
QUESTION: — portion of the –
MR. TONER: — I know she was supposed to meet with the Sudanese, but I believe she’s already done that. So – and there were some events tomorrow scheduled, like the Cookstove Initiative, I believe, and other –
QUESTION: Diplomacy, no?
MR. TONER: Not public diplomacy, but important events.
MR. TONER: But again, what – she was very clear that she was committed to returning to finish the portion of her trip, but again, these are unforeseeable events that forced her to depart early.
Hillary Clinton’s public schedule for Monday June 13, posted on State Department website, indicates the following activities:
3:45 p.m. LOCAL Secretary Clinton holds a bilateral meeting with African Union Chairperson Jean Ping, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
(POOLED CAMERA SPRAY)
5:00 p.m. LOCAL Secretary Clinton delivers remarks to the African Union assembly, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
(OPEN PRESS COVERAGE)
6:00 p.m. LOCAL Secretary Clinton holds a bilateral meeting with Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
(POOLED CAMERA SPRAY)
7:10 p.m. LOCAL Secretary Clinton holds a joint press availability with Ethiopian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Haile-Mariam Desalegne, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
(OPEN PRESS COVERAGE)
Apparently, Clinton conducted her tasks for Monday, except the joint press statement with the Ethiopian Deputy Prime Minister.
It appears it is her plan to visit US government supported programs in Ethiopia that had been cancelled. Those events had been, according to a press release by the US Embassy in Ethiopia on Monday morning:
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will visit the Menelik II Secondary School in Addis Ababa and greet girls’ scholarship students, orphans and vulnerable children, and participants in Boys and Girls Scouts programs that receive US government support to stay in school. The Secretary will deliver remarks on the importance of girls’ education. First Lady Azeb Mesfin and Minister of Education Demeke Mekonnen will also attend and give remarks.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will visit a Clean Cookstove demonstration at the Peace Corps Ethiopia headquarters and deliver remarks on the Global Cookstove Alliance. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Hailemariam Desalegn will also be present and deliver remarks.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will visit the Hamlin Fistula Hospital and deliver remarks on US Government support to the Government of Ethiopia’s program to improve women’s health through the President’s Global Health Initiative. Federal Minister of Health Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and CEO of Hamlin Fistula Hospital Mr. Mark Bennett will also attend and give remarks.