Antony Blinken, the United States Secretary of State, has urged the Nigerian government to hold accountable, military officers who commit human rights abuses. 
The top US official stated this at a press conference held at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa alongside Nigeria's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama. 

Screengrab from CNN's video.
He had earlier met with President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo. 
Blinken had visited Kenya before coming to Nigeria, and is expected to visit Senegal, all between November 15 and 20. 
His visit is to underscore the depth and breadth of US' relationship with African partners.
Highlighting the partnership with Nigeria in areas of security, he explained that it is expected of the government to hold accountable members of the military who are guilty of human rights abuses, noting that military and civilian security forces are effective when they act in accordance with the rule of law. 
He stated, “We’re also providing more human rights and rule of law training because military and civilian security forces are more effective when they act in accordance with these values and because it’s crucial that Nigeria hold accountable members of the military who commit abuses. 
“Journalists, human rights defenders, and others in Nigeria’s very vibrant civil society are playing a vital role in shining 
a spotlight on these and other issues.  
“Their ability to exercise freedom of expression and other basic human rights is crucial to advocating for individuals and communities and strengthening this country’s vibrant democracy, as we’ve seen in the successful efforts to promote electoral reform and lower the age at which Nigerians can run for office.”
Welcoming the report of the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry on EndSARS, Blinken said the Nigerian government must ensure accountability and address the grievances of the victims and their families. 
This is even as he noted that the US government is working closely with Nigeria to help the populations most affected by conflict and violence in the country, particularly in the Northeast, where the US is providing vital humanitarian aid to approximately 2.2 million internally displaced Nigerians.
He said, “We’re working with Nigeria to address security challenges, including those posed by Boko Haram, ISIS West Africa, and other terrorist and extremist groups. In meetings with the president, with the vice president, with the foreign minister, we discussed the importance of a comprehensive approach that builds effective security forces, addresses the underlying drivers of extremism, and respects Nigerians’ basic human rights.  
"The United States is committed to helping Nigeria do that by continuing to invest in our security partnership and the institutions that strengthen the rule of law and that hold accountable those who commit human rights abuses, corruption, and other acts that harm the Nigerian people.  
“By tackling these issues, we can help to address some of the problems that have been key drivers of insecurity. To that end, let me say that we welcome the conclusion of the investigation by the independent panel of inquiry established by the Lagos state government to look into the events that took place near Lekki toll gate in Lagos in October of 2020, and this, of course, was amidst the 'End SARS' protests, including the killings and other alleged abuses by the security forces.  
“We anticipate and look to the state and the federal government’s response to the findings and expect those to include steps that ensure accountability and address the grievances of the victims and their families.  
“We’re also working closely with Nigeria to help the populations most affected by conflict and violence in the country, particularly in the northeast, where the United States is providing vital humanitarian aid to approximately 2.2 million internally displaced Nigerians. 

“The United States continues to build the capacity, together with Nigeria, of the military, including through the recent delivery of 12 A-29 Super Tucano aircraft. But capacity building goes much deeper than delivering military hardware, something that we talked about as well. 
“We’re also providing more human rights and rule of law training because military and civilian security forces are more effective when they act in accordance with these values and because it’s crucial that Nigeria hold accountable members of the military who commit abuses. 
“Journalists, human rights defenders, and others in Nigeria’s very vibrant civil society are playing a vital role in shining a spotlight on these and other issues. 
“Their ability to exercise freedom of expression and other basic human rights is crucial to advocating for individuals and communities and strengthening this country’s vibrant democracy, as we’ve seen in the successful efforts to promote electoral reform and lower the age at which Nigerians can run for office.
“I look very much forward to meeting several of these leaders tomorrow, including faith leaders who are defusing communal tensions and promoting peace. And we look forward to Nigeria, Africa’s largest democracy, joining the Summit for Democracy next month.  
“All participants from the government to civil society will make commitments to improve and strengthen democracy in our respective countries and strengthen the partnership among democratic nations.
“The range of issues that we’re working on together is vast, but given the interests we share and the challenges we have in common, delivering for our people demands that we find ways to deepen our existing ties and partnerships even further. That’s ultimately what this visit and the work that we’re doing every single day between our governments, between our people – that’s what it’s all about.”

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