Boko Haram, ISIS The Same, Says French President | Independent Newspapers Limited
Newsletter subscribe

News, Slider

Boko Haram, ISIS The Same, Says French President

Posted: Sep 15, 2015 at 12:36 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

President Francois Hollande of France, on Monday in Paris said it is no longer easy to distinguish Nigeria’s Boko Haram sect from the Islamic State (IS), given the link between both groups, just as the former gets support from the latter.

President Francois Hollande of France

President Francois Hollande of France

Hollande, who received visiting President Muhammadu Buhari on a three-day visit to France at the Elysee Palace, Monday, was quoted as saying during a joint press conference: “Boko Haram is linked to Daesh. It receives aid and support from this group.

“The fight against Boko Haram is the fight against Daesh,” he said, referring to the Arabic acronym for Islamic State.

“It is no longer possible to distinguish terrorism from regions. It’s the same terrorism inspired by the same death ideology,” he added, stressing that the fight against Boko Haram and Islamic State jihadists is the same battle.

“We know Boko Haram is linked to Daesh and so receives help, support from this group,” Hollande said, using the Arabic acronym for the IS group.

“To fight Boko Haram is to fight Daesh, and we can no longer single out terrorism according to regions. It is the same terrorism, inspired by the same ideology of death,” he added.

Hollande said a number of agreements had been signed in the agricultural sector “which is Buhari’s major priority.”

“We are part of the coalition in Iraq (against Islamic State).

“We started reconnaissance flights (in Syria) to enable us to consider air strikes if they were necessary and they will be necessary in Syria.”

Buhari, seeking support for his battle against the deadly sect that has terrorised three states of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe mainly, since 2006, warned that the jihadist group had expanded “after declaring its loyalty to IS” in March.

France’s military base in Chad’s capital, N’Djamena, has become the hub of its operations against jihadists in the Sahel region, and last month Hollande proposed to host an international meeting on tackling Boko Haram.

“France’s assistance to Nigeria against Boko Haram focuses mainly on intelligence operations,” a source close to Hollande was quoted as saying on Monday night, adding that Paris conducts surveillance flights over Nigeria “at the request of the Nigerians.”

The French presidency source, who wished to remain anonymous, said French supermarket chain Carrefour is planning to open stores in Nigeria, carmaker Peugeot is going to reinvest in existing operations and Renault is considering establishing a presence there.

President Buhari was accompanied on the trip by the National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Munguno, the Permanent Secretaries in the Ministries of Defence, Finance, Agriculture, Foreign Affairs and Industry.

Also on the trip are the Permanent Secretaries of Trade and Investment as well as the Chief Executive of the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission.