UN pledges support for Nigeria's anti-terrorism effort

(Xinhua) 13:18, May 05, 2022

ABUJA, May 4 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday pledged further support to the Nigerian government for ending terrorism, saying the world body will also mobilize more funds to the country's humanitarian response plan.

Guterres met Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House in Nigerian capital Abuja as part of his three-nation visit to Africa. He promised that the UN will mobilize an additional 351 million U.S. dollars to a current plan in support of the country's humanitarian efforts in the country's northeast region, which has been suffering from terrorist activities.

"We are very active in support of the humanitarian efforts of the Nigerian government and that is why we have called for an additional 351 million dollars as part of the overall 1.1 billion for the humanitarian response plan for Nigeria," said the UN head during a meeting with Nigeria's top officials.

Guterres also told reporters at the State House that his visit to Nigeria focused on addressing security challenges in the most populous African country, Lake Chad, and the Sahel.

Buhari, in his response, said Nigeria remains grateful to the UN and some world leaders for their steadfast partnership in fighting terrorism, adding his country and the African continent were concerned that the Russia-Ukraine conflict would crowd out other issues, but the UN head's visit clearly showed "the world has not forgotten us."

He also noted that the Nigerian government has started a gradual and steady process of resettlement and reintegration where local people are encouraged to return to the country's northeast region.

Earlier on Wednesday, Guterres attended a wreath-laying ceremony for victims of the 2011 bombing by Boko Haram at Nigeria's UN House in Abuja.

During the visit to Nigeria, the first since he took office as UN secretary-general, Guterres said the United Nations is committed to alleviating the suffering of the internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the northeastern state of Borno, where he visited some camps for IDPs and transit areas of repentant Boko Haram militants in the restive Borno.

Since 2009, Boko Haram has been trying to establish an Islamist state in northeastern Nigeria, extending its attacks to the Lake Chad Basin, where the group has posed enormous security challenges. 

(Web editor: Peng Yukai, Liang Jun)


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