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President lauds international community for stabilisation efforts in West Africa

He, particularly, noted with delight the contributions of France in ensuring peaceful conduct of elections in the sub-region.

President Muhammadu Buhari

The President extolled the international community at a joint news conference with President Francois Hollande of France after a closed-door meeting at the Presidential Villa.

``On the economic side, we are very grateful for the efforts being made to stabilise this region.

``Last year, as you know, we had five elections. This year, we are going to have another five.

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``We’ve already had three, namely, Benin, Niger and Chad.

``And this concern shown by the world in stabilising the region, economically and politically is highly appreciated.’’

Buhari said Nigeria would remain grateful to France for the efforts it had been making towards ensuring peaceful co-existence in the country and beyond.

He also expressed appreciation to the French president for inviting him to address the summit of G-7 held in Strasbourg, France.

``Inviting me as part of G-7, the week I was sworn in as President, to brief the world about Nigeria, clearly showed your concern for our country.

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``Since then you organised a meeting in France, which we attended and discussed the issue of climate change and the security situation in the Lake Chad Basin,’’ he added.

President Buhari said the history of the Nigeria-France relations dated as far back as 1902.

He, therefore, pledged that Nigeria would continue to promote economic and socio-cultural relations with France for the good of the peoples of both countries.

In his remarks, President Hollande, who spoke in French, praised Buhari for his leadership qualities.

He also applauded him for being able to mobilise the Multinational Joint Task Force and spearheading the fight against Boko Haram.

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He restated France’s determination to continue to support the multinational force in its campaign against Boko Haram.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that President Hollande, who arrived Abuja on Friday, is to participate in the 2nd Regional Security Summit, being hosted by Nigeria.

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