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Ban Ki-Moon To Mark Jihadist Attack On UN In Nigeria

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UN chief Ban Ki-moon begins a visit to Nigeria at the weekend to commemorate a deadly attack on the global body by Boko Haram militants and meet the country’s new leader.

The secretary-general arrives in Abuja on Sunday for talks with President Muhammadu Buhari, who came to power on May 29, Nigerian and UN officials said Friday.

Ban will lay a wreath to commemorate the fourth anniversary of the car bombing at United Nations House, the headquarters for around 400 UN employees, that left 21 dead on August 26, 2011.

The visit will be Ban’s second since taking office in 2007. He last visited Nigeria in May 2011 to discuss the crises in southern Sudan and Libya with then leader Goodluck Jonathan.

Ban “is expected to discuss development, climate change, human rights and countering violent extremism while he is in Nigeria, said his spokeswoman Eri Kaneko.

The UN chief is also due to dine with captains of industry and the west African nation’s state governors during the two-day trip, a statement from the Nigerian foreign ministry said.

Ban will visit members of “Bring Back Our Girls”, the campaign said on its website, although the announcement was not immediately confirmed by the government or UN.

The group will mark 500 days next week since the abduction of more than 200 schoolgirls from the northeastern village of Chibok by Boko Haram.

The secretary-general will stop over in France on his return trip to discuss preparations for a major climate change conference to be held in Paris in December.