Posted by News Express | 4 October 2015 | 2,793 times
The U.S. has pledged to stand with the Government and the people of Nigeria to defeat Boko Haram and other perpetrators of terrorism, while its Anti-terrorism Assistance Programme (ATA) announced that it has conducted a mass casualty exercise to culminate a yearlong training programme with 200 Nigerian Police and other emergency management professionals.
These revelations were contained in separate statements released by the First Secretary, Press Attaché, Mr. Sean McIntosh, and the Public Affairs Section, U.S. Embassy on Saturday in Abuja.
According to the statement released by the First Secretary, Press Attaché, Mr. Sean McIntosh, the U.S. promised to help Nigeria defeat the Islamist terror sect Boko Haram through its security and counter-terrorism assistance and its unparalleled commitment to help.
The U.S made the commitment following the twin explosions in Nyanya and Kuje in Abuja on October 2, and the suicide bombings in Maiduguri and Adamawa on October 1.
“We extend our deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of those killed and injured.
“These tragic events are stark reminders that violent extremists will stop at nothing to inflict horrific and indiscriminate harm upon innocent lives.
“In particular, Boko Haram’s reign of terror and sheer brutality have left thousands dead and millions displaced.”
In its statement, the Public Affairs Section disclosed that the exercise conducted in Abuja on Saturday, was ATA’s largest in Nigeria, and it included participants from Nigerian Red Cross, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), and medical personnel.
The statement said that the exercise enhanced everyone’s ability to plan effectively for and manage a mass casualty critical incident.
It explained that the U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires, Mrs. Maria Brewer, at the event said that the exercise was to achieve new innovation among the participants.
“By bringing together all of your various agencies, with outside experts in the field, we can achieve new innovations, greater cooperation, and build upon many of the skills you already possess.”
Brewer, in the statement, expressed the U.S. Government’s condolences for Oct. 2 twin bomb blasts in Abuja which further emphasised the significance of the training and emergency preparedness.
The statement also quoted the NEMA Director General, Alhaji Sani Sidi, as commending the U.S. for organising the programme for the emergency professionals and security agents.
“The capacity building programme provided by the Anti-terrorism Assistance Programme of the United States is coming at a very good time when all hands must be on deck to defeat terrorism.
“There is a need for the security agencies and the Nigerian actors to step up their game in order to counter these threats.”
According to the statement, in its 1.5 million dollars programme worldwide, ATA has trained NEMA in critical incident management courses and enhanced Nigeria’s explosive ordnance disposal capabilities through courses, seminars, and equipment grants.
It said ATA had trained senior hospital personnel and emergency response personnel including police, fire fighters, emergency management technicians, and specialised law enforcement units on management of mass casualty incidents. (NAN)
•Photo shows U.S. President Barack Obama .
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