President Bola Tinubu of Nigeria engaged in discussions on West African security matters with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who is currently on a four-country African tour.
Mr. Blinken emphasized Washington’s commitment to being a robust security partner for Nigeria, especially in their joint efforts against Islamist militants in the region. Nigeria has been grappling with increasing violence in the north and its capital, Abuja, where armed groups have targeted communities and abducted residents for ransom.
The Sahel region has witnessed growing instability, marked by military coups in four of the 15-member Ecowas regional bloc. Mr. Blinken’s tour, excluding countries recently affected by coups, also addressed challenges to democracy in the region.
During his visit to Abidjan earlier on Tuesday, Mr. Blinken commended Ivory Coast’s President Alassane Ouattara for his initiatives to counter extremism in northern areas bordering the Sahel.
The United States is actively working to maintain its influence in Africa amid stiff competition from Russia and China.