It was her first solo international tour since her husband, US President Donald Trump, took office last year – but Melania Trump had to urge the media to focus on her initiatives, not her outfits, as she visited the African continent.
The First Lady of the United States embarked on a four-nation visit last week, which culminated with a stop in Egypt on Saturday. Trump arrived in Cairo, where she was welcomed by First Lady Entissar al-Sisi and local schoolchildren, before meeting President Abdul Fattah el-Sisi at the presidential palace. FLOTUS also made time for some sightseeing, venturing to the Great Pyramid of Giza and the Sphinx. Dressed in a pale camel Ralph Lauren blazer and silk Chanel blouse, Trump posed in front of the architectural treasures, and was quizzed by media on her trip.
When questioned about her outfit choices – particularly a white pith helmet worn during her stay in Kenya – however, the First Lady urged reporters to instead focus on her work. “You know what? We just completed an amazing trip. We went to Ghana. We went to Malawi. We went to Kenya. Now here we are in Egypt,” she said, according to WWD. “I want to talk about my trip and not what I wear. That’s very important, what I do, what we’re doing with USAID, my initiatives and I wish people would focus on what I do, not what I wear.”
The First Lady also used the brief press conference to reveal that she does not always agree with President Trump’s often-controversial tweets. “I give him my honest opinion and honest advice,” the former model said, Reuters reports. “I have my own voice and my opinions, and it’s very important for me that I… express what I feel.”
The aim of FLOTUS’s trip to Africa was to spread the message of her “Be Best” initiative, a campaign devised by Trump to promote the social, emotional, and physical health of children. “Whether it is education, drug addiction, hunger, online safety or bullying, poverty or disease, it is too often children who are hit first, and hardest, across the globe,” she said, according to AP. “Each of us hails from a country with its own unique challenges, but I know in my heart we are united by our commitment to raising the next generation to be happy, healthy and morally responsible adults.”
Standing near the Sphinx, Trump also told the media gathered that the international visit was designed to show “we care”. “And we want to show the world that we care.”