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Nigeria urges U.S. to move Africa Command headquarters to continent

GlobalApr 27, 2021 18:06
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© Reuters.

ABUJA, April 27 (Reuters) - The United States should
consider moving its military headquarters overseeing Africa to
the continent, from Germany, to better tackle growing armed
violence in the region, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said
on Tuesday.
Nigerian security forces face multiple security challenges
including school kidnappings by armed gangs in its northwest and
piracy in the Gulf of Guinea as well as the decade-long
insurgency by Islamist militant group Boko Haram, which also
carries out attacks in neighbouring Niger, Cameroon and Chad.
West Africa's Sahel region is in the grip of a security
crisis as groups with ties to al Qaeda and Islamic State attack
military forces and civilians, despite help from French and
United Nations forces.
Buhari, in a virtual meeting with U.S. Secretary of State
Antony Blinken on Tuesday, said U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM),
should be relocated to Africa itself.
"Considering the growing security challenges in West and
Central Africa, Gulf of Guinea, Lake Chad region and the Sahel,
weighing heavily on Africa, it underscores the need for the
United States to consider re-locating AFRICOM headquarters...
near the theatre of operation," said Buhari, according a
statement issued by the presidency.
He spoke a week after the death of the longtime president of
Chad, Idriss Deby, in a battle against rebels.
Deby was an important Western ally in the fight against
Islamist militants and under him Chadian soldiers formed a key
component of a multinational force fighting Boko Haram and its
offshoot, which has pledged allegiance to Islamic State.
"The security challenges in Nigeria remain of great concern
to us and impacted more negatively by existing complex negative
pressures in the Sahel, Central and West Africa, as well as the
Lake Chad Region," said Buhari, a retired major general.
AFRICOM did not immediately respond to a request for
comment.


Nigeria urges U.S. to move Africa Command headquarters to continent
 

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