Nigeria Working to Deepen Bilateral Relations with U.S — Minister

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Amb. Yusuf Tuggar, Minister of Foreign Affairs.


Federal Government says it is working to deepen bilateral relations with the U.S. in accordance with Nigeria’s foreign policy thrust under President Bola Tinubu.

Minister of Foreign Affairs, Amb.Yusuf Tuggar stated this at the 248th U.S. independence anniversary dinner organised by the U.S. Embassy in Abuja on Tuesday.

The minister said deepening Nigeria-U.S. ties would further cement their many years of cooperation and friendship.

He noted that the signing of the Nigeria-U.S. Binational Cooperation is one of the major foreign policy objectives of the Tinubu administration.

Tuggar, represented by Amb. Janet Olisa, Director of Regions, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said that Nigeria-U.S. bilateral relations “has been nurtured over the years” with various cooperations that have strengthened the ties.

“Since our independence, we have been two nations that have continued to watch our friendship, bond, and cooperation closely.

“One of the major developments that happened this year was the Nigeria-U.S. Binational Cooperation agreement, and it is a testament of how important and cordial our relationship is.

“The Secretary of State just left Nigeria not too long ago. And to ensure that we had a smooth running, the Deputy Secretary of State, who had just been confirmed, hurried to Nigeria to ensure that we had a very successful Binational,” Tuggar said.

The minister said both countries were working on a few other agreements and cooperations toward strengthening them.

“We are also looking into security, which is significant to Africa as a continent, particularly Nigeria.

“We are looking at strengthening the security bond between us; we are thankful for all the security cooperation that we are receiving,” he said.

Tuggar also expressed Nigeria’s gratitude to the U.S. for the various interventions in the country’s health sector challenges.

“We are also grateful that in the Ministry of Health, we’ve been able to get some collaborations  in all the HIV/AIDS programmes.

“That is the bond of friendship, as we welcome the incoming ambassador, Richard Mills. We know he’s going to have a wonderful time here.

“I must say that we Nigerians are a people that have always understood the importance of nationhood.

“Nationhood is key to us and for that our security cannot be taken for granted. So I wish you all a very fruitful celebration and we join you to say Happy Independence,” the minister added.

Speaking earlier, Amb.Mills, said that both countries are two proud federal republics that share a commitment to democracy and freedom.

He added that they both share the belief expressed in the U.S. Declaration of Independence 248 years ago.

According to him, every Nigerian and U.S. citizen shares in the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

“As I settle into Abuja and into my role as the 22nd U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria, I look forward to meeting many of you and working together to strengthen our ties,” he said.

Also speaking, Amb. David Greene, U.S. Embassy’s Deputy Head of Mission and Charge d’Affairs, described Nigeria-U.S. relations as a “whirlwind in the best way.”

The U.S. envoy disclosed that there are 700,000 Nigerians living and working in the U.S., saying it underscores the significance of the U.S.-Nigeria people-to-people ties, which is the bedrock of the relationship.

“Our bond has always been strong. But lately it feels like we’re really sprinting forward together to make Nigerians and Americans more secure, healthier, and more prosperous,” he said.

The event was attended by senior government officials, members of the diplomatic corps, representatives from the business, political, religious, media, and civil society sectors.


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