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Thomas-Greenfield Leads US Observation Mission For Nigeria’s Elections


Linda Thomas Greenfield Thomas Greenfield

THE top United States diplomat for Africa, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, is due in Nigeria for today’s elections, the State Department said on Thursday, amid concerns over the possibility of violence.

According to Reuters, Thomas-Greenfield, the US Assistant Secretary of State for Africa, will lead a US observation mission for the Presidential and National Assembly elections, the State Department said. “This is the latest example of U.S. support for a credible, peaceful electoral process in Nigeria,” it added in a statement, saying she may hold high-level talks while in the country.

Thomas-Greenfield’s predecessor, Johnnie Carson, who led an election observation team to Nigeria in 2011, is heading a US-funded international observation team to the election. US President Barack Obama this week appealed for calm ahead of the election and British Prime Minister, David Cameron called for transparent and violence-free elections.

In 2011, about 800 people died in post-election violence and Western powers have been pressing the two main parties, the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) not to stoke tensions before, during and after the polls.

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