President Donald Trump sought to mend relations Friday with a key African leader in the aftermath of his controversial comments about African nations.

He praised the U.S. partnership with Rwanda during a meeting with its president at the World Economic Forum in Switzerland.

Trump's meeting with Rwandan President Paul Kagame came after Trump drew widespread condemnation for allegedly referring to African nations as "shithole countries" in dismissing a bipartisan immigration proposal, according to those at the meeting.

Trump has denied using that language. Others present insist he did.

Trump described "tremendous discussions" with Kagame, who is beginning a one-year term as head of the African Union. The 55-member continental body criticized the U.S. president's remarks.

Neither Trump nor Kagame mentioned the row during brief comments to reporters.