The Federal Government has solicited the cooperation of Russia to eliminate the Boko Haram insurgents from Nigeria and the Lake Chad Basin countries.
The Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali made the appeal yesterday at the 8th Moscow “Conference on International Security.’’
Dan-Ali also sought Russia’s cooperation in securing the maritime domain of the Gulf of Guinea.
“Military and technical assistance in this respect will be highly appreciated,’’ he said, adding that its cooperation in critical infrastructural development, especially the modernization of Nigeria’s military arsenal is needed.
“It is the intention of Nigeria to leverage on Russia’s support to attain technological emancipation of our Military Industrial Complex and training of Nigerians especially in medicine, science and technology.’’
Dan-Ali expressed concern over the rise in terrorism and insurgency in the continent with specific reference to Boko Haram in Lake Chad Basin countries, Al-Shabaab in Somalia/Kenya, and Islamic State in Mali.
“Since 2009, my country Nigeria has been combating terrorism engendered by an Islamic Sect called Boko Haram.
“Nonetheless, owing to the sustained counter insurgency operations by Nigeria and other countries of the Lake Chad Basin Commission which include Benin, Niger, Chad and Cameroon, the Boko Haram terror network has been overwhelmed and the leadership structure is presently decimated,’’ he said.
Dan-Ali said the pervasive security challenges in the Gulf of Guinea include piracy and armed robbery against ships in the region.
“The region remains increasingly dangerous for seafarers.
“From the International Maritime Bureau Report of 2019, the Gulf of Guinea accounts for all six hijackings worldwide, 13 of the 18 ships fired upon, 130 of the 141 hostages taken globally and 78 of the 83 seafarers kidnapped for ransom in 2018.