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Arms seizure: Nigeria’s top security officials in crucial talks

By Daniel Idonor
HIGHEST level security meeting was Thursday staged behind closed doors in Aso Rock with the looming diplomatic row between Nigeria and Iran dominating the proceedings.

Feelers from the crucial session however point to the fact that the Federal Government may have opted for diplomatic solution out of the emerging face-off, due to what officials considered as “Iran already has more than enough diplomatic crises; and in the spirit of the group of developing nations, D-8, which both countries are key players”.

President Goodluck Jonathan locked in the security parley chaired the session in his capacity as the Commander-in-Chief of the country’s Armed Forces, while the National Security Adviser, NSA, Service Chiefs the Inspector- General of Police, IGP, Director-General of State Security Service, SSS, and Defence Intelligence Agency, DIA, were in attendance.

According to findings, the high level security session, which lasted for several hours also had Mr. Odein Ajumogobia, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Adetokunbo Kayode, Minister of Defence and other senior government officials in attendance.

A highly placed Presidency source close to the meeting confided in Vanguard that the arms dispute between Nigeria and Iran topped the agenda of the meeting.

It was gathered that Ajumogobia briefed the meeting of his visit to the United Nations, UN, on the Iranian issue and the possible way of resolving the dispute diplomatically.

The source however stated that the quick resolution of the matter lies entirely on how Iran handles the arms issue and noted that at the moment the government was not considering severing  diplomatic relations with Iran.

“Iran is one of Nigeria’s friendly nations and the Nigerian government is not presently thinking of cutting off diplomatic relations with Iran but the Iranian government has to reassure us that such a thing will not happen in the future,” the source said.

The source, who spoke to our correspondent on condition of anonymity said the principal suspect in the case was still with the SSS pending the outcome of the case.

“Nobody concerned in this matter has escaped. It was only the diplomat involved that was allowed to return to Iran but the principal suspect is still with us,” the source stated further.


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