ABUJA FEBRUARY 6, 2015(CISA) – The United Nations Security Council on February 6 urged West and Central African countries to improve regional military coordination to combat Boko Haram in northern Nigeria.
In a statement, the UN Security Council welcomed a meeting of experts in Yaoundé, Cameroon, from 5 to 7 February to finalize how the force will operate, reported Reuters.
The 15-member Security Council statement comes just days after Chadian troops clashed with Boko Haram fighters in the north-eastern Nigerian town of Gambaru on February 3 in a bid to break the insurgents’ grip on the town bordering Cameroon.
While supporting the Chadian military counter attack against Boko Haram into Nigerian territory the UN Security Council said the operation “was conducted with the consent and the collaboration of Nigeria whose territorial integrity remained intact.”
The Security Council commended the Chadian army’s “swift assistance in the fight against Boko Haram in Nigeria, during which territory was recaptured from Boko Haram and more than two hundred Boko Haram terrorists were neutralized and equipment was recovered, including a dozen vehicles mounted with heavy weapons.”
The African Union (AU) has authorized a force of 7,500 troops from Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon, Niger and Benin to fight the Islamist militants.
Chad has already deployed some 2,500 troops to the regional force that will take on the militant group which has become the main security threat facing Nigeria, Africa’s biggest economy and top oil producer, and increasingly threatens neighboring countries.
Elsewhere, Nigeria’s influential council of state has decided to continue with presidential elections scheduled for February 14, rejecting calls for a postponement.
Several of Nigeria’s smaller opposition parties as well as the country’s national security adviser, Sambo Dasuki had earlier called for a delay of the poll to allow more time for voter card distribution.