The Bangladesh Chief of Army Staff, General Abu Belal Muhammad Shafi’ul Huq has paid a courtesy call on the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General TY Buratai, In Nigeria.
The general said about Bangladesh
“It is a very difficult experience and it will continue to be difficult but can be countered through the use of intelligence. Counter insurgency is at best an intelligence operation,” Lieutenant General Buratai said.
Success in northeast
Lieutenant General Buratai said the lessons he learnt from the Bangladesh National Defence while on course in May 2016, had been very useful in the counter insurgency operations in the North-East.
According to him, “the lessons are partly responsible for the success being recorded in the fight against the Boko Haram terrorists.”
General Shafi’ul Huq, on an official visit to Nigeria, was accompanied by the Bangladesh High Commissioner-designate, some of his staff and the Nigerian Defence Adviser to New Delhi, who also oversees Bangladesh.
Present to receive the visitors were Principal Staff Officers and Corps Commanders in Lagos.
General Shafi’ul Huq commended the the Nigerian Army for the success it had recorded in the fight against the Boko Haram terrorists.
He said both his country and Nigeria had a lot of experience and knowledge to share in counter insurgency operations.
General Buratai urged army officials around the world to take the issue of insurgency and terrorism seriously, saying they were difficult battle to overcome.
He also said army in particular bears the brunt as they confront terrorists in very difficult terrain and indeed, sometimes within the population.
General Shafi’ul Huq said his visit was to explore ways both countries could further strengthen their relationship.
The Bangladesh Army Chief will also be in Abuja to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari, Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan Ali, Chief of Defence Staff, General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin and other Service Chiefs while on a five-day visit.
The Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, renewed calls for international collaboration in the battle against terrorism, promising that Nigeria will continue to cooperate with the international community in the global fight.
Osinbajo who made this call in his office when he received Bangladeshi Chief of Army Staff, General Abu Belal Muhammad, said networking by terrorist groups had increased the need for countries to close ranks in the bid to counter the threats posed by terrorist activities.
“We are concerned about terrorism not just within our borders. We have also seen the influence of terrorists across borders and how terrorist organisations have cooperated with each other.
“We are aware, for instance, that some within our own borders are cooperating with ISIL and we think that these sorts of evil collaborations must have a response from countries that share similar experiences and can present a credible force against terrorists,” he said.
Osinbajo who noted that “terrorism is a major problem and perhaps the most significant problem that the free world will face in the coming years’,” added that improved cooperation between the Bangladeshi and Nigerian military would go a long way in curbing threats posed by terrorist groups within and around borders of the two countries.
“We have benefitted a lot from some of your experiences in fighting insurgency in Bangladesh and we hope that we benefit even more from those experiences. We have had similar problems with Boko Haram and I know that you have also had problems of some sort with terrorist groups within the borders of Bangladesh,’’ he added.
Earlier, the Bangladeshi Chief of Army Staff, Muhammad, said the long standing relations between Nigeria and Bangladesh had been helpful in career development of many officers of the armed forces of both countries.