President Muhammadu Buhari and US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken

Insecurity: Buhari solicits US support, relocation of AFRICOM to Africa

*The Nigerian President says the support of important and strategic partners as the United States cannot be overstated, as the consequences of insecurity in the country will affect all nations

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Nigeria needs the support of the United States (US) and the larger international community because the consequences of the current security challenges in the country would affect all countries if not contained.

ConsumerConnect reports President Muhammadu Buhari, who stated this Tuesday, April 27, 2021, emphasised the need for the support of the US and other “important and strategic partners” in combating the security challenges the country is faced with.

Mr. Femi Adesina, Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, in a statement Tuesday said the President made the call during a virtual meeting with Mr. Anthony Blinken, US Secretary of State.

US Africa Command  Headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany   Photo: Radio Dabanga

In the statement titled, ‘Security: President Buhari Asks US to Relocate Headquarters of AFRICOM to Africa, Warns of Likely Spillovers’, Adesina noted President Buhari stated that the support is necessary because the destructive consequences of insecurity in Nigeria would affect other countries in the world.

Besides seeking the assistance of the country, Buhari as well urged the US to consider relocating US Africa Command from Stuttgart, in Germany, to Africa, nearer the Theatre of Operation, the statement said.

The President implored the international community to support Nigeria and the sub-region in tackling growing security challenges to avoid spillovers to other countries.

According to him, AFRICOM, which partners with countries to counter transnational threats, should be relocated to Africa to strengthen ongoing efforts to check the security situation, with likely effect on other nations.

“The security challenges in Nigeria remain of great concern to us and impacted more negatively, by existing complex negative pressures in the Sahel, Central and West Africa, as well as the Lake Chad Region.

“Compounded as the situation remains, Nigeria and her security forces remain resolutely committed to containing them and addressing their root causes,” stated he.

Buhari further said: “The support of important and strategic partners like United States cannot be overstated as the consequences of insecurity will affect all nations hence the imperative for concerted cooperation and collaboration of all nations to overcome these challenges.

“In this connection, and considering the growing security challenges in West and Central Africa, Gulf of Guinea, Lake Chad region and the Sahel, weighing heavily on Africa, it underscores the need for the United States to consider relocating AFRICOM Headquarters from Stuttgart, Germany to Africa and near the Theatre of Operation.”

Nigeria, the President added, would enhance collaborations in all forms, with friends and strategic partners, to work together for greater security for all, which remain the most significant condition for overcoming the existential challenges.

He also congratulated Blinken on his appointment by US President Joe Biden, and commended US for the decision to repeal the immigration restriction known as the “Muslim ban’’, by rejoining the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

He stated that Nigeria remains resolute in its commitment to supporting global efforts as enshrined in the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, which seeks to limit global warming and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The convening of the Climate Change Summit last week by President Biden was a strong indication of the renewed interest of the United States to the Paris Agreement, he noted.

Buhari added: “I would like to extend our goodwill message to President Joe Biden and his Administration.

“May I also thank you for initiating this meeting, which I am confident, given your background and current position, you will use to promote the existing bilateral relations between our two countries.’’

The US Secretary of State also said that he was pleased to make Nigeria part of his “first virtual visit to Africa,” according to the statement.

Blinken stated Nigeria and the US share a lot in bilateral issues.

He stressed he would be delighted to build on the foundation that was laid between the two countries over 60 years ago, disclosing that areas of discussion with Nigeria would include “how to build our economies back after the COVID-19 pandemic, security for vulnerable communities, and climate issues.”

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