Sunday, January 25, 2015 5:55 pm
The United States is ready to go further to help Nigeria defeat Boko Haram militants, United States Secretary of State John Kerry said on Sunday, pledging Washington’s continued support for the counter-insurgency.
“We will continue absolutely to support the (Nigerian) military in this fight. Boko Haram continues to kill scores of innocent civilians,” he said on a visit to Lagos, condemning recent attacks.
Kerry, who met President Goodluck Jonathan and his main rival, Maj. General Muhammadu Buhari in next month’s elections, said the United States was “deeply engaged” with Nigeria but added: “We are prepared to do more.”
Kerry also stated that a peaceful and timely elections were vital in Nigeria, where the country is battling a deadly insurgency by Boko Haram.
He added that the United States would deny Visas to sponsors of violence in Nigeria.
“It is absolutely critical that this election can be conducted peacefully. The international community is paying very close attention to this election,” he said on a visit to Lagos.
Boko Haram violence in Nigeria’s far northeast has raised concerns about the ability to hold the February 14 vote on time but Kerry said it was “imperative that elections happen on time, as scheduled”.