Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Political Consultations Between Nigeria and Switzerland

Political consultations between Nigeria and Switzerland

BERNE, Feb. 20, 2012 / / - The Secretary of State Peter Maurer of the DFA received on February 20 in Bern a Nigerian delegation, led by Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Martin Uhomoibhi, within the framework of political consultations between the two countries initiated in May 2010. This high-level meeting which helped to address various bilateral and multilateral issues is followed by technical meetings under the Partnership migratory and consultations on human rights.

The two delegations, whose countries enjoy excellent relations, were discussed areas of common interest such as the strengthening of bilateral relations, trade - Nigeria is the second economic partner for Switzerland in sub-Saharan Africa - and bilateral investment, the security situation in the Sahara-Sahel region and multilateral issues. Concerns about recent terrorist attacks in Nigeria and security issues throughout the region have been exchanged to identify solutions on a regional basis.

Relations between Switzerland and Nigeria, in the field of migration, are the subject of a memorandum of understanding signed in February 2011 in Bern between Federal Councillor Simonetta Sommaruga, head of the FOJ, and the former Minister of Nigerian Foreign Affairs, Henry Odein Ajumogobia. This memorandum establishes a migration partnership between the two countries, the first such agreement between Switzerland and an African country. The two delegations continued discussions within the framework of this partnership that allows for cooperation in the long run, the benefit and the benefit of both parties. The MOU covers cooperation particularly in strengthening the capacity of immigration, the fight against human trafficking, police cooperation and the promotion and protection of human rights. Many joint projects, dedicated to training youth and involving some Nigerian diaspora in Switzerland, are all elements of the partnership who are to be developed. Both sides stressed the importance to be given to voluntary return in safety and dignity. In 2011, 80% of Nigerian citizens to leave Switzerland is done on a voluntary basis, many of them taking advantage of a program of assisted return.

At the multilateral level, Switzerland, who chaired the Global Forum on Migration and Development in 2011, was pleased to acknowledge the commitment of Nigeria on the theme of South-South migration and expressed appreciation for continued collaboration with this country in 2012.

Further technical meetings in migration, a second round of consultations on human rights is also held in Switzerland. Both sides looked forward to this important instrument that allows both countries to deepen their cooperation in a constructive and meaningful in terms of human rights, including multilaterally.

Source: Switzerland - Ministry of Foreign Affairs

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