Nigeria, Turkey agree to strengthen security pact

President Muhammadu Buhari and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have agreed, after talks, yesterday in Ankara to strengthen cooperation between the security agencies of both countries to counter terrorism

Speaking at a joint press conference after a tete-a-tete with his host, President Buhari said he was “very pleased” that the defence ministers of both countries held extensive discussions on developing new strategies for counter-terrorism

“We are very pleased with the progress of the meeting so far and we are going to wait for the details of meetings between the two countries

“We will as a result of the meeting between the ministers and officials of both countries strengthen rapidly whatever their recommendations are,” he said

On the degradation of Boko Haram, President Buhari said the improved security situation in the North-east was an eloquent testimony to the efforts of his administration in combating terrorism

“We were very surprised and disturbed by the claim made by Boko Haram on what they have been getting from ISIS

We know we will be able to contain them and we have proven that we can do it

“We are very pleased that Turkey is in a position to assist us and has been strengthening our educational and health institutions

” The President said the two leaders also discussed the prospects of increasing their bilateral trade, which has exceeded $779 million in the first eight months of 2017

“There are a lot of potentialities in terms of investments and a lot is being done in the education and health sectors in Nigeria

“These will be strengthened and I assure you that Nigeria is prepared to accept Turkish business people to come and explore more of Nigeria’s potentialities

” In his remarks, Erdogan said Nigeria had great potentials and remains “a global actor in terms of economy, demographics and its peacekeeping records

” He said Turkey was interested in investing in Nigeria’s electricity, refineries and gas sectors, adding that increasing the flights between Turkey and Nigeria would furtherimprove commercial and peopleto-people relationships

On the fight against terrorism, the Turkish leader said: “There is no difference between Boko Haram, Fethullah Terrorist Organisation or Daesh (ISIS), which has all killed, inflicted pain and hardship on innocent people

“We also expect the same cooperation from Nigeria in fighting against Fethullah that murdered 250 Turkish citizens, last year

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