French PM starts tour to Africa

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls issued an appeal on Sunday to overcome the legacy of slavery, dismissing claims for financial compensation while acknowledging the “horror” of the slave trade.
Valls was visiting Franklin House, a former slave hub in the Ghanaian capital Accra, on Sunday on the second leg of a three-country tour of West Africa.
“We cannot repair slavery but we can prepare the future” he said in an article published by the French daily Le Monde and the English magazine The Africa Report.
Valls rejected the idea of compensation, instead advocating for strengthened trade relations between Africa and Europe.
“It is not so much about living for the idea of reparation… as about looking to tomorrow, about strengthening the ties between our two continents on either side of the Mediterranean,” he said.
‘Memory should not divide’
“The slave trade was a disaster on a large scale. That reality must be remembered, taught and hammered home,” he said, “the many atrocities, rapes and murders. It was a crime against humanity.”
But Valls argued against calls for reparations, rejecting the idea that Africa’s history is solely defined by slavery.

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