President Goodluck Jonathan assured the president of Niger Republic, Mahamadou Issoufou, that Nigeria would take definite steps to strengthen security cooperation with all her neighbors. This happened yesterday when Issoufou paid a one-day visit to Nigeria.
Jonathan said this measure would ensure the security of people and check trans-border crime.
Other areas of cooperation discussed included power, water supply, agriculture, rail transport and the Nigeria-Niger Joint Commission.
Jonathan, the current chairman of the 15-nation Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, also condemned an alleged coup attempt in the neighboring country last month.
He said Nigeria would take definite steps to strengthen security cooperation with all her neighbors in order to check trans-border crime and terrorism and ensure the security of people. Such cooperation would include strengthening border patrols, he added.
A video obtained by AFP last week showed a Briton and an Italian kidnapped in northern Nigeria in May. In the video, the victims say their abductors are from Al-Qaeda, though the assertion was impossible to verify.
The kidnappings occurred near the border with Niger, where Al-Qaeda’s north African branch, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, AQIM, has claimed abductions of foreign workers. The group has never claimed kidnappings in Nigeria.
Nigeria has also been hit by scores of attacks in recent months blamed on an Islamist sect known as Boko Haram in the northern part of the country, though the group has not been accused of kidnappings.
Issoufou told Jonathan that his country was concerned about the growth of small arms which threatened security in the sub-region. He announced last week that 10 people had been arrested for attempting a coup last month in the West African country that recently emerged from military rule.