Nigeria’s stability essential to us: Russia
The Russian ambassador to Nigeria, Alexey Shebarshin, says the stability of Nigeria is critical to the stability of Africa and the Russian interests on the continent.
“Our idea is that Nigeria is a vital central point of importance in Africa and the stability and development of your country will stabilise the African continent,” Mr Shebarshin told chief of army staff Farouk Yahaya on Thursday during a courtesy visit to his office.
“We believe it is very much in our interest because we have many Multinational companies in different countries,” he added.
The Russian envoy said he was visiting the army chief because “the Nigerian army of today is the basis of stability in your country and peace is absolutely necessary for solving development issues in your country.”
He noted his country’s prowess in the manufacture of military hardware, saying Russia would be willing to support Nigeria in its fight against insurgency.
In his own remarks, Mr Yahaya underscored the need to resuscitate the partnership between the Nigerian Army and Russian Defence.
He said that Nigeria and Russia had been cooperating for decades, adding that some of the military equipment being used by the Nigerian army were procured from Russia.
According to him, “we will leverage the visit of the envoy to explore new areas.”
He listed some of the areas to include the Nigerian army aviation, artillery equipment and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), which he said was of importance for the army to be able to conduct surveillance for a longer duration to facilitate counter insurgency operations.
“We have a lot of requirements and we know that we can get support from Russia.
“We will discuss further and see areas we can cooperate,” Mr Yahaya said.
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