Defence Minister woos EU on counter-terrorism

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BY KINGSLEY OMONOBI

ABUJA—Minister of State for Defence, Erelu Olusola Obada has said the European Union, EU, can come to the aid of the Nigerian military in the areas of intelligence gathering, counter-terrorism training and modern technology used in diffusing improvised explosive devices, IEDS.

She spoke while receiving the EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator, Mr. Gilles De Kerchove, in her office.

The minister said these were vital areas in which the EU counter-terrorism office can support Nigeria for her to checkmate insecurity and terrorism challenges facing the nation.

She commended the counter-terrorism chief for showing interest in how Nigeria can scale through the present terrorism huddles.

Obada said: “This is about the third time you are visiting Nigeria to find out how the EU can be of assistance to solving this problem.”

Earlier, Mr. De Kerchove said he was in the country to discuss latest developments and efforts at fighting insecurity and terrorism because of the importance of Nigeria in the efforts to achieve world peace.

He said counter-terrorism component of the EU was created in 1994 after the Madrid bombings in Europe, adding that EU was ready to support Nigeria in counter-terrorism training.

He said: “We would like to know how we can support the Nigerian Army in particular and the Joint Task Forces be cause we know they are involved and doing a lot to checkmate the insecurity and terrorism challenges.

“We are also aware that you are participating in the ECOWAS force that is being put in place to reclaim the territory of Mali that has fallen into the hands of rebels in that country.

“We would like to know the areas where you feel we can support your country.”

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