The United States (US) Government has begun expressing anxiety over the unending spate of killings in Nigeria, as it yesterday held a crucial closed-door meeting with key players in the country's military.
The meeting, which was held about 48 hours after the explosion that occurred again in Kano in less than two weeks, was at the headquarters of the Ministry of Defence with top military chiefs in attendance at the instance of the Defence minister of State, Olusola Obada.
Journalists were barred from the meeting in which the United States' Ambassador to Nigeria, Terence McCulley, who came with the message from the US government was said to have expressed deep feelings over the continuous bombings, killings, maiming and destruction of property especially in the northern part the country. Journalists were earlier invited for the meeting but on arrival, the Ambassador, Mr McCulley had his reservations concerning the arrangement, in view of the sensitivity of the meeting.
Conequently, he was led by the Minister to her office in company of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Azubuike Onyeabo Ihejirika and his Air Force counterpart, Air Marshal Alex Sabundu Badeh including the acting Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr. Oguche. Daily Sun gathered that the recent continuous terrorists attacks in Kano, Jos and Maiduguri, Gombe amongst other places in the north, which gave serious worries to America, dominated the agenda.
A source says, "the Ambassador told them that his country was displeaed with the continuous killings in Nigeria, with particular reference to the Kano incident where two luxurious buses scheduled to travel to Lagos were bombed which led to the death of about 60 persons, urging the country to take serious actions to tackle terrorists."
Despite entreaties, the Ambassador refused to speak to the press after the meeting as earlier promised. However, the meeting continued with the Service Chiefs before some General Officers Commanding (GOCs), who joined them in the meeting began to come in.
A source further disclosed that the Minister made efforts to convince the Ambassador about what the military was doing to contain the Boko Haram Sect, citing the recent successes recorded in the arraignment of one of the Sect’s kingpin, Kabiru Sokoto last week and how the military had been consistently arresting some members of the sect and exposing their hideouts in the country.
The service chiefs were said to have cited the military assaults on the Islamic extremists in Mali by the AFISMA as the factor responsible for the upsurge in the terrorist attack and vowed to contain them.
Speaking with newsmen later, the Minister, Obada, claimed that the meeting with the Ambassador was a regular one that had to do with the US-Nigeria Bilateral Relations and how to improve upon it especially as it regards the military support and other areas that are of mutual interest to the two.
"We have a beautiful meeting with the Ambassador to further deepen the cooperation between Nigeria and the United States and we discussed a lot of issues that are beneficial with both countries. United States of America and Nigeria have come a very long way together in terms of military cooperation, in terms of training and so many other things.
"We intend to keep our relationship with them to ensure that the two enjoy each other's confidences. There are other issues that we discussed towards on-going happenings which good explanations have been given."