Vermont welcomes president of Senegal - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Vermont welcomes president of Senegal

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SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. - The leader of Senegal arrived in Vermont Thursday.

As soon as President Macky Sall touched down in Vermont, one of the first questions he got from the media was about ebola. That's essentially been how his entire time in the U.S. has gone. Sall just wrapped up a trip to Washington for President Barack Obama's first ever U.S.-Africa leaders summit. Obama is hosting about 50 leaders from the continent, trying to show the various countries the U.S. is a better global partner than China.

Senegal shares a border with Guinea, where at least 350 people have died from Ebola, some of the close to 1,000 deaths reported in four African countries.

Senegal, like the U.S., has not had any reported cases contracted in its country. But its president says with global travel and globalization, any virus is now just a plane ride away.

Sall called it a world crisis, not just an African crisis. He says this is for everyone to solve, not just Africans.

"We have very much the tools in place to fight this disease, we have research we're depending on -- health services and all the authorities to make sure we keep this in check but (I'm) very confident that will happen," Sall said through a translator.

As far as the rest of his short trip here in Vermont, there are no scheduled events Thursday night. Friday, Sall meets with state leaders and then he's back at the airport by noon.

Sall is in Vermont to discuss the official relationship between Vermont and Senegal. Senegal and Vermont have had an official relationship since 2008, and the previous president came to the Green Mountains, as well.

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