U.S. President Barack Obama, left, makes a toast during an official dinner with Senegalese President Macky Sall at the Presidential Palace on Thursday, June 27, 2013, in Dakar, Senegal. Obama is visiting Senegal, South Africa, and Tanzania on a week long trip. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) -- President Barack Obama says the United States makes no apology for supporting efforts to stand up for human dignity in Africa.
Obama says fear too often prevails in nations across Africa. He's citing Muslim nations like Mali and Somalia and says too often terrorism perverts the meaning of Islam.
Obama says the American military presence in Africa is focused on putting muscle behind African efforts. He says as the U.S. can't stop tragedies alone, but if Africans step forward and lead, the U.S. can help.
He says as long as parts of Africa are ravaged by war, democracy and economic opportunity can't take hold.
Obama's comments came at the University of Cape Town during the flagship speech of his trip to South Africa.
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