AU Leaders Condemn Terrorism, Insurgency on the Continent

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 As Nigeria reels under the pain caused by terrorists in the country,  African leaders at the ongoing 23rd Ordinary Summit of the African Union (AU) in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, have condemned the spate of attacks by terrorists and insurgents on the African continent.

The Chairman of the AU and Mauritanian President, Mr. Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, speaking at the opening of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government yesterday morning, said the continent's leaders must rise to the occasion and adequately respond to contemporary security challenges.

He added the tragic events across the continent are a reminder that to ensure peace and security, there is need for a better understanding of the continent.

President Goodluck Jonathan was present at the meeting, but THISDAY gathered that he was expected to return to Abuja immediately after the bomb blast that 21 persons in Abuja Wednesday.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Aminu  would represent him at a meeting of the Assembly on Friday.

Wali in his address to the Peace and Security Council on Wednesday evening, had called on Africa to strengthen its security linkages and early warning systems as a way to curb terrorism and insurgency in the continent.

Speaking with THISDAY, Wali disclosed that although Nigeria was not prepared for terrorism as it was alien to its shores, the federal government was now working assiduously to adequately empower the armed forces and security agencies to cope with the new realities.

He also expressed the commitment of the government to a implementing a long-term strategy to curb terrorism through human welfare programmes.

Also at the meeting on Wednesday evening, Ugandan President, Museveni, who is the Chairman of the PSC, called on national governments to build competent detribalised and non-sectarian national armies.

He blamed the policy of sectarianism for the spate of conflicts and insecurity across the continent.

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