U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken says the U.S. is keen to strengthen bilateral ties with Nigeria.
The was disclosed in a statement by Ned Price, spokesperson for the U.S Department of State, on Tuesday.
It followed a telephone conversation between Mr. Blinken and Nigeria’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama.
Mr. Blinken said in the statement that the U.S considered its relationship with Nigeria important but expresses concerns over ongoing insecurity in the country.
“Secretary Blinken outlined a holistic approach to the U.S.-Nigeria partnership based on our shared values of democracy, respect for human rights, and robust people-to-people relations.
“Acknowledging the threats that violent extremists pose to Nigerian and regional security, he welcomed President Buhari’s recent appointment of military service chiefs.
“To bring new approaches to combat terrorism in the northeast and provide national security throughout the country, President Biden’s revocation of immigrant visa restrictions on Nigeria is an affirmation of the close ties between Americans and Nigerians,” said Mr. Price.
The spokesperson further said Mr. Blinken reiterated the United States’ support for Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala as the new director general of the World Trade Organisation.
Responding after the discussion via his Twitter handle, Mr. Onyeama said he was glad to re-engage with the U.S. Secretary of State and was looking forward to increased cooperation between the two countries.
He stated, ”Very glad to re-engage, through a very nice phone call with U.S. Secretary of State, @SecBlinken.
“We covered a broad range of bilateral and multilateral issues and look forward to increased cooperation.”