UN urges Nigeria neighbours to step up Boko Haram fight

2015-02-06 13:32
A  screengrab taken from a video released by the Nigerian Islamist extremist group Boko Haram. (Boko Haram, AFP)

A screengrab taken from a video released by the Nigerian Islamist extremist group Boko Haram. (Boko Haram, AFP)

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New York - The UN Security Council on Thursday urged Nigeria's neighbours to step up military co-operation in the battle to defeat Boko Haram.

The 15-member council issued the appeal as a meeting got under way in Cameroon's capital Yaounde to agree on a combat strategy for a regional force against the jihadists.

Chad, which is a Security Council member, as is Nigeria, is taking a leading role in the force and has already sent troops across the border to drive out Boko Haram from the town of Gamboru. Niger is also set to send troops to Nigeria.

The council "commended the Chadian army's swift assistance in the fight against Boko Haram" and noted that the Chadian incursion was carried out with Nigeria's consent.

At the three-day meeting in Yaounde, regional experts are to draw up an operations plan that could then be presented to the Security Council for approval.

UN officials have said countries may then be asked to contribute funding for the military operations against Boko Haram, but they would seek assurances that differences over the campaign are resolved.

"The members of the Security Council urged the region to enhance regional military operations and coordination to more effectively and immediately combat Boko Haram," a council statement said.

Nigeria has come under fierce criticism for failing to rein in the insurgents, who have intensified their campaign in the northeast in the run-up to presidential and parliamentary elections on 14 February.

Chad, Niger and Cameroon have said Boko Haram now poses a regional threat and vowed to take action to prevent them from waging attacks on their territories.

Read more on:    un  |  boko haram  |  nigeria  |  west africa

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