Here’s why the Russian President, Vladimir Putin wants to assist Nigeria tackle terrorism
Russian President Vladimir Putin has promised to support Nigeria combat terrorism and counter religious extremism.
He spoke on Thursday, when he received the Nigerian Ambassador to Russia, Professor Abdullahi Shehu, who presented a Letter of Credence to him at Grand Kremlin Palace according to DailyTrust.
On specific areas of bilateral cooperation with Nigeria, Putin assured of “very promising expansion on substantive dialogue on topical issues related to maintaining stability in the world hydrocarbon markets, combating terrorism and countering religious extremism”.
He said his country was open to mutually beneficial partnership with all countries without exception but based on equality, and respect for each other’s interests while observing the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of each other.
He said Russia had developed vaccines to combat COVID-19 and was read to collaborate with any country interested in availing any of the Russian vaccines. In his response, Shehu extended the greetings of President Muhammadu Buhari to Putin.
NewsWireNGR recalls that, in August, Nigeria and Russia had signed a military cooperation deal providing a legal framework for the supply of equipment and the training of troops.
President Muhammadu Buhari had expressed interest in such a pact with Russia as far back as 2019, when he met with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin at a Russia-Africa summit.
The Nigerian ambassador to Russia at the time said Buhari felt Russia could help defeat the Boko Haram Islamic insurgency in the northeast of the country, which remains a major problem.
“The Agreement on Military-Technical Cooperation between both countries provides a legal framework for the supply of military equipment, provision of after sales services, training of personnel in respective educational establishments and technology transfer, among others,” the Nigerian embassy said in a statement.
It described the pact as a landmark development in bilateral relations between Abuja and Moscow. Nigeria already uses some Russian fighter jets and helicopters, alongside military equipment purchased from Western powers such as the United States.