US Judicial Officials Meet With Nigerian Military Authorities

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A delegation of the United States Judicial Committee of the Congress on Tuesday met with the officials of the Federal Ministry of Defence and the service chiefs as part of US efforts to enhance cooperation between the two countries in tackling Boko Haram insurgency.

According to the ministry, the meeting is as a follow up to President Muhammadu Buhari’s recent visit to United States of America.


It will be recalled that based on allegation of human rights abuse levelled against Nigeria by the Human Rights Organisation, the United States refused to sell ammunition to Nigerian Military as enshrined in Leahy law, prohibiting the country from providing military assistance to foreign countries guilty of violation of human rights with impunity.


The meeting was therefore one of the efforts being made by the two countries to resolve the accusation and counter accusation by the Human Rights Organisation and Nigeria.


Briefing newsmen after a closed door meeting, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence, Alhaji Ismail Aliyu, stated that having identified gaps created in the relationship between the two countries, deliberations made centred on the issues of insecurity in Nigeria and improvement on human rights.


He stated that the visit of Mr President was a great gain to the country, which has rekindled the hope and aspirations of the two countries to resolve the matter.


The visitors were much concerned about the security situation in Nigeria and in the Lake Chad Basin area which informed the basis for the visit.


He noted that all identified gaps would be definitely worked on.


"We discussed the issues of security and human rights and they are pleased with the discussions," he concluded.


The leader of the delegation, Darrel Issah, reiterated that their visit was to fashion out possible modalities towards assisting Nigeria in her challenge with additional technical support through provision of overhead surveillance and other logistics to fight Boko Haram and stop oil theft by pirates.


He noted that discussions were made in such a way that both parties have confidence that the rules of law have been obeyed.


He pointed out that the process to lift restrictions as prescribed Leahy has begun and the US is looking forward to reactivate a proactive relationship upon which she can provide a much robust support.


Present at the meeting were the Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Gabriel Olonisakin, Chief of Army Staff, Major General Yusuf Buratai, Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Admiral Ibok Ette Ibas, Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshal Sadiq Abubakar, other top military officers and top government functionaries.