MOSCOW, May 8 (RIA Novosti) – The office of French President Francois Hollande announced Wednesday plans to send security service agents to Nigeria to combat the Islamist Boko Haram terrorist group, joining US military personnel and UK government staff, Reuters has reported.
“The president expressed his desire to increase intelligence cooperation with Nigeria, involving all regional countries, so that this terrorist group can no longer carry out such acts,” said a statement on Hollande's telephone conversation with Nigerian leader Goodluck Jonathan.
Hollande promised Paris would dispatch a special team to Abuja to help find more than 200 kidnapped girls.
With more than 4,000 troops operating between Mali and the Central African Republic, France is the second European nation to act on the threat to Nigeria’s security. Britain is to join the effort by sending a team to Nigeria to help with the search, according to Downing Street.
A small team of Whitehall experts will fly to Nigeria to help with the response to the mass abduction from the Chibok Secondary School, assistance offered by Prime Minister David Cameron after he told the House of Commons that the mass abduction was "an act of pure evil."
North American powers have also expressed readiness to take action, with the Pentagon to send a small team of US military personnel to the Nigerian capital in the coming days and Canada pledging equipment for the search effort.
The team is part of a larger US contingent that includes FBI officials as well as personnel from the of Defense, Justice and State departments.
Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird has offered to provide surveillance equipment to Nigeria, supplemented by technical expertise to operate the equipment.
The Islamist Boko Haram group abducted around 275 schoolgirls on April 14.
On Wednesday, as many as 300 people were killed in another Boko Haram attack on the town of Gamboru Ngala on Nigeria's border with Cameroon, according to local reports. The attack and hundreds of casualties were later confirmed by the Associated Press after a phone conversation with a regional official.