Nigeria to buy French helicopters, Singapore patrol boat

26th November 2009, Comments 0 comments

The Nigerian government has agreed contracts to buy military hardware from France and Singapore worth more than 110 million dollars, its information minister has announced.

ABUJA - The west African state will buy five used Puma helicopters from the French government for peacekeeping and to patrol the volatile Niger Delta region, Dora Akunyili said after a cabinet meeting.

The 103 million dollar (69 million euro) deal with France also includes training, ground support equipment and spare parts.

Under a second contract, worth 8.8 million dollars (5.8 million euros) Nigeria will buy a fast patrol boat from Suncraft International in Singapore, to be used by the navy to patrol maritime borders, Akunyili said.

Militants have waged a violent campaign in the oil-rich Niger Delta for more than three years, saying they are fighting for greater share of oil wealth for their communities.

Violence had a significant impact on Nigeria's oil output, but a government amnesty has led many to lay down their arms, and peace talks have taken place between the government and key rebel groups.


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