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Donald Trump Invents African Country, Thanks Leaders for Making His Friends Rich

The gaffe was quickly noticed on Twitter, with users cracking jokes and launching memes at the president's expense

US President Donald Trump (C) greets Uganda's President Yowri Kaguta Museveni (R) before a luncheon with US and African leaders at the Palace Hotel during the 72nd United Nations General Assembly on September 20, 2017 in New York
AFP PHOTO / Brendan Smialowski

During a lunch with African leaders on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday, U.S. President Donald Trump announced that the nonexistent country of "Nambia" is a prime example of an "increasingly self-sufficient health-care system."

The gaffe (in the official online transcript of the remarks, the White House corrected the nation's name to Namibia) was quickly noticed on Twitter, with users cracking jokes and launching memes at the president's expense. One Twitter user wrote, "Namibia? Zambia? Well, someone's health system is increasingly self-sufficient." While another joked, "Chronicles of Nambia."

In his comments, Trump congratulated the group of leaders for helping his friends get rich. "Africa has tremendous business potential. I have so many friends going to your countries, trying to get rich. I congratulate you. They're spending a lot of money," Trump said to open his remarks

Trump also said the U.S. was deeply disturbed by, and closely monitoring, violence in South Sudan and Democratic Republic of Congo. Not all the African leaders were impressed with Trump's earlier address at the United Nations General Assembly – a photo of Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe sleeping through Trump's address went viral. 

The president also mentioned during the lunch that he would send his UN Ambassador Nikki Haley to Africa to discuss conflict prevention.