Thursday, July 16, 2015





The United States President, Barack Obama, will host President Muhammadu Buhari at the White House on July 20 to discuss how to fight the Boko Haram militant group, among other issues, the White House said on Thursday.
“The visit will underscore the United States’ commitment to strengthening and expanding our partnership with Nigeria’s new government,” the White House said in a statement.
During the visit, Obama will discuss “a holistic, regional approach to combating Boko Haram” with President Buhari, who has led Africa’s biggest economy and most populous country since being elected in March.
During the visit, advancing economic and political reforms in Nigeria will also be discussed between senior government advisers from both countries, the White House said.
Obama and other leaders met with Buhari at the G7 Summit earlier this month where they discussed efforts at combating Islamist militants.
US officials have also said the US could send more advisers to Nigeria to train its military and it could help boost the nation’s economy through more investment in its oil and gas sector.
Meanwhile, President Buhari on Thursday insisted that regional and international cooperation was needed to ensure victory over terrorism in Nigeria and other countries.
According to a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, the President said this during a meeting he had with the President of the Economic Community of West African States Commission, Mr. Kadre Ouedraogo, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Buhari was further quoted as welcoming efforts aimed at strengthening cooperation between ECOWAS and the Economic Community of Central African States on the war against terrorism.
He assured Ouedraogo that Nigeria would hold further consultations with other stakeholders to agree on a new date for the ECOWAS-ECCAS security summit on Boko Haram, earlier scheduled to hold in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, on April 8, 2015.
The summit was postponed because of the general elections in Nigeria on March 28 and April 11, 2015.
The statement added, “President Buhari also assured Mr. Ouedraogo that Nigeria will continue to fulfill its financial obligations to ECOWAS to enhance the regional body’s ability to attain its objective of regional integration and development.
“The President commended the ECOWAS Commission and other ECOWAS institutions for progress made on the Biometric Identity Card system, which will come into force in 2016, saying that its introduction will be a major milestone to full regional integration and the free movement of ECOWAS citizens within the sub-region.”
Also, the US has condemned the latest Boko Haram attacks in Borno State which resulted in the death of more than 40 people.
According to the US, the recent attacks are a reminder of the terrorist group’s capability to wreak major havocs.
In a statement issued in Washington by the US Department of State’s spokesman, John Kirby, the US called on the Federal Government to hold those responsible for the attacks accountable.
“We offer our deepest sympathy and condolences to the families and friends of the victims of recent attacks in Borno State — attacks that resulted in more than 40 deaths. We condemn in the strongest terms the continued and widespread violence inflicted by Boko Haram on innocent men, women and children in Nigeria. Those responsible must be held accountable.
“These latest attacks serve as a reminder that despite progress on the battlefield, Boko Haram remains capable of deadly and destabilizing acts of terrorism. We commend the efforts by the Nigerian military, as well as the militaries of Chad, Niger and Cameroon for the gains they have made fighting Boko Haram,” Kirby stated.

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