In his message to African heads of state and government the President said, in part:
“In 2010 this date takes on a new meaning with the celebration of a special anniversary of the Year of Africa. Fifty years ago, the emergence on the political map of young African states opened a new page in shaping the contours of the contemporary world order. The dismantling of colonialism became a vivid example of the triumph of the ideas of progress, equality, and democracy on the planet.
Our ties with the African continent have traditionally developed incrementally, becoming more extensive and extending to new areas. We believe that cooperation between Russia and Africa is gaining a fresh positive dynamics, the level and intensity of our contacts continue to rise, and we are systematically working to strengthen and diversify those relations. I am confident that our partnership that has withstood the test of time will develop fruitfully at the interstate level and in multilateral formats.
We therefore welcome the consistent policy aimed at deepening political and economic integration within the African Union and other organizations. I believe this promising tendency will become a potent tool in the solution of the many issues facing the region.
Looking back at the past half century, we can see how much the role of Africa has increased in world affairs. Your countries take a more active part in resolving the most pressing present-day problems, in the joint quest for answers to global challenges and threats.
On its part, our country calls for increasing the efficiency of the assistance the international community provides to Africa, particularly within the United Nations and the Group of Eight [G8]. We will continue to make efforts in that direction.
I wish the peoples of Africa and their leadership lasting peace, progress, and prosperity.”