Italy supports Buhari’s war on terror, anti-graft


• Urges International community to place Nigeria on priority list

From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja

Prime Minister of Italy, Mr. Matteo Renzi, has expressed his country’s support for President Muhammadu Buhari’s total war on terror and his anti-corruption crusade.

Renzi particularly called on the international community to place Africa on the priority list as far as the war on terror is concern.

Renzi told State House correspondents these shortly after meeting Buhari behind closed-doors inside the Presidential Villa in Abuja. 

He said they discussed cooperation in the areas of security, energy and infrastructure during the meeting.

The Italian prime minister said his country was ready to improve cooperation with Nigeria in areas of security, energy, agriculture and small and medium enterprise.

On the fight against terrorism, Renzi said: “The international community should consider Africa as priority in the fight against terrorism.” 

Buhari, on his part, told reporters that issues of development resources, training of security agents and agriculture came up during the talks he had with Renzi. 

The president will also begin an official visit to France and Britain today, to continue his clamour for global unity against terrorism.

His Special Adviser ‎on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina‎, in a statement said the president’s first stop in Strasbourg, France, will address a special session of the European Union Parliament to be attended by members of the executive and legislative arms of the Union.

Adesina said Buhari’s address is expected to focus on terrorism, violent extremism, corruption, Nigeria and Africa’s current security, economic and developmental challenges, as well as the need for greater support from the European Union and advanced nations for their rapid resolution.

Buhari is expected to hold talks with the President of the European Parliament, Mr. Martin Schulz and the President of the European Commission, Mr. Jean-Claude Juncker on the same issues before leaving Strasbourg for London to join other world leaders at the Supporting Syria and The Region Conference.

Adesina said the president will use the opportunity of his participation in the conference which is being co-hosted by Britain, Germany, Norway, Kuwait and the United Nations to continue his push for more global understanding, collaboration and support for Nigeria.

In a related development, the Presidency has said Buhari’s foreign trips are not jamboree but for the good of the country.

Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, told State House correspondents this in Abuja on Monday. ‎Shehu said the need to block all safe havens for looted funds from Nigeria was responsible for the President’s numerous trips.outside the country.