The Presidency has said the removal of Nigeria from the religious violators’ watch list in the run-up to the visit of Anthony Blinken, the US secretary of state, was a triumph of diplomacy over hate-driven foreign policy founded on propaganda.
The senior special assistant to the president on media and publicity, Garba Shehu, stated this Friday in a piece titled, “What Biden’s Removal of Nigeria from Religious Violation Watch list Means.”
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Shehu, who recalled that Nigeria was included in the list in December 2020, after the loss of Donald Trump at the US, said the sad ban came on the heels of 12 months of lies by some extremist groups and the banned terrorist group in the country, the Indigenous People of Biafra’s (IPOB) well-funded international media campaign.
He said their aim was to drive a wedge, for political advantage, between the two great religions and make true their fake claims that Muslims and Christians could not live side-by-side in love and peace.
He noted that the listing of Nigeria among countries of concern for religious freedom violation watch list complicated the fight against terrorism across the Sahel region.
The statement quoted the US secretary of state as saying that the decision of the Joe Biden government on the matter was “based on facts.”
“With this egregious listing removed, US-Nigeria relation is now reset. We can jointly seek resolution to other critical matters, including the fight against terrorists across the Sahel region,” the statement added.