Italy promises to assist Nigeria in fight against terrorism

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ABUJA – Italian on Wednesday in Abuja declared its support and willingness to assist in fight against terrorism.

Italian Ambassador to , Mr Fulvius Rusticu, gave this pledge during a courtesy visit to the Minister of State 1 for Foreign Affairs, Prof. Viola Onwuliri.

Rusticu said and had a long tradition of military and security cooperation could bolster the ongoing fight against insurgency in the country.

He recalled in April both countries conducted a joint naval parade in Lagos, which underscored the importance of the defence cooperation between both countries.

is a major country in the production of military equipment and we have some experience in tackling terrorism.

“We have also conducted training for Nigeria security forces in the past’’, he said.

The Italian envoy said his country was ready to be involved in the fight against insurgency in any way the Nigerian deemed fit and necessary.

The ambassador urged the minister to use her good offices to ensure Nigerian erected a pavilion at the Expo MILAN 2015, with “Food and Agriculture’’ as its theme.

He said 143 countries, including 40 in , had indicated interest to participate in EXPO Milan to showcase their current activities and proposals for the future, around the theme of food and nutrition.

Responding, Onwuliri thanked the Italian envoy for the offer and noted that capacity building for Nigeria security agencies was central in the fight against terrorism.

“Terrorism is to us and somehow, our security agencies are not very much prepared for it’’, she said.

She, however, expressed confidence in the ability of Nigerian security agencies to defeat insurgents had conducted multiple bombings, abductions and indiscriminate killings.

On Nigeria’s at EXPO Milan, the minister said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had written to and was awaiting his approval.

She said the financial implication to rent a pavilion at the Milan Expo 2015 was “huge’’, but did not say whether that foreclosed Nigeria’s .

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that following a presidential directive in January, the is implementing a policy that has curtailed foreign travel by personnel.

The directive, which applied to all Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the , was aimed at reducing the cost of governance. (NAN)