News / USA

Obama, Jonathan Discuss Kenya Attack, Terrorist Threats

President Barack Obama meets with Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan in New York, Sept. 23, 2013.
President Barack Obama meets with Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan in New York, Sept. 23, 2013.
President Barack Obama has promised Nigeria's leader the U.S. will help fight terrorism in that country. In their meeting ahead of Obama's speech to the United Nations General Assembly, the two leaders discussed the terrorist attack in Kenya and similar threats to Nigeria.

Obama's discussion Monday with President Goodluck Jonathan dealt with the threat that terrorism poses across Africa, including in Nigeria where the government is battling the Boko Haram terrorist group.

The president said the United States will continue helping Nigeria build capacity to deal with the problem, which he called “an extraordinary security challenge.”

But it is the attack by al-Shabab terrorists on a shopping mall in Kenya that now dominates headlines.  

Obama referred to his telephone conversation Sunday with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, who lost family members in the attack. He said the United States stands with the people of Kenya, and vowed to work with all of Africa to dismantle terrorist networks.

“This I think underscores the degree to which all of us as an international community have to stand against the kind of senseless violence that these kinds of groups represent," the president said.  "And the United States will continue to work with the entire continent of Africa and around the world to make sure that we are dismantling these networks of destruction."

Jonathan called the United States and Nigeria “natural allies” and spoke of Nigeria's role in helping to stabilize West Africa and the rest of the continent.

Referring to the “dastardly attack” in Nairobi, he said it underscores the need to fight terrorism.

“Terror anywhere in the world is terror on all of us, and we call on diplomat leaders to come together and fight terror, and until we all agree to wipe out terror all over the world, the world will continue to be embarrassed by these acts of violence," Jonathan said.

Jonathan said Nigeria needs more U.S. support to deal with its own terrorism problem.

Obama said U.S. assistance would help Nigeria confront the problem in a way that is consistent with human rights.

The two leaders also discussed elections in Nigeria in 2015, with Obama stressing the importance of ensuring that the elections improve the country’s democratic process.  

In the first of only three formal bilateral meetings on his schedule in New York, Obama and Jonathan also discussed the goal of spreading electricity throughout the continent, and helping to empower young Africans.   

Obama addresses the U.N. General Assembly Tuesday.

You May Like

Video British Fighters on Frontline of Islamic State Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign jihadists More

Pakistan's Political Turmoil Again Shines Spotlight on Military

Thousands of protesters calling for PM Sharif to step down continue protests in front of parliament, as critics fear political impasse could spur another military coup More

Photogallery Ebola Quarantines Spark Anxiety in Liberian Capital

Food prices rise sharply as residents attempting purchases clash with security forces, leaving one person dead More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid