Buhari receives U.S. secretary of state at Aso Rock

Marie Harrington
March 13, 2018

The nation's leader added that he would be in Yobe State, from where Dapchi schoolgirls were abducted, later this week "as part of my condolence and sympathy visits to areas where we have had unfortunate events".

When he arrived on Friday, the Secretary of State and the President discussed democracy and media freedom - he said the government should not stifle the media and threaten the courts.

"These steps I think are going to allow us to begin to normalize the travel relationship with Chad", Tillerson said.

"He is also expected to discuss how to advance peace and security, promote good governance, and spur mutually beneficial trade and investment with the president". Trade between both countries stand at 9 billion US dollars.

After his meeting with President, Mr. Tillerson is now holding a press conference with his Nigerian counterpart, Geoffrey Onyeama. Chad, with its long border with Libya and proximity to Nigeria and Mali, is particularly affected by the threat of instability and extremism in the region.

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Yet earlier this month, the Trump administration quietly lifted the US ban on importing African elephant trophies, to the dismay of environmental groups who said it sends precisely the wrong message.

He assured that the United States government has offered to assist Nigeria in ensuring speedy rescue of the girls by providing materials, intelligence training, among others.

"We hope that something can be worked out and they can secure the release of these girls quickly".

The US military has a drone unit at the N'Djamena airport, Washington backs a multinational force fighting Boko Haram jihadists, helps train Chadian troops and provides military equipment to its armed forces, according to a Chadian military official.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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