by Dolapo Adelana
Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo on Tuesday said Nigeria was aware that terrorists operating within the country are working in alliance with the militant Islamic group, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
Osinbajo said this while receiving the Bangladeshi Chief of Army Staff, Gen. Abu Belal Muhammad, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
According to a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr. Laolu Akande, the Vice-President called for international collaboration to tackle terrorism.
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He said, “We are concerned about terrorism not just within our borders, we have also seen the influence of terrorists across borders and how terrorist organisations have cooperated with each other.
“We are aware for instance that some within our own borders are cooperating with ISIL and we think that this sort of evil collaborations must have a response from countries that share similar experiences and can present a credible force against terrorists.
“Terrorism is a major problem and perhaps the most significant problem that the free world will face in the coming years.”
On the relations between both countries, Osinbajo said improved cooperation between the Bangladeshi and Nigerian military would go a long way in curbing threats posed by terrorist groups within and around borders of the two countries.
“We have benefitted a lot from some of your experiences in fighting insurgency in Bangladesh and we hope that we benefit even more from those experiences.
“We have had similar problems with Boko Haram and I know that you have also had problems of some sort with terrorist groups within the borders of Bangladesh,” he added.
Osinbajo said Nigeria looked forward to cooperating with the Bangladeshi government across different fronts including defence and the economy.
The Vice-President hoped for collaboration in some other respect like with the Bangladesh Ordinance Factory, saying, “we also have an ordinance factory here at DICON which we are hoping to do a lot with very soon. We hope that there might be ways that we could cooperate especially in the manufacture of ordinances, arms generally and other forms of weaponry.’’
In his remark, Muhammad said the long-standing relationship between Nigeria and Bangladesh had helped in the career development of many officers of the armed forces of both countries.
The Bangladeshi Army chief is in Nigeria on a working visit to improve military relations between both countries.