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Benin to join anti-Boko Haram war with 800 troops

DEMONSTRATING his commitment to the anti-terror war, President Thomas Boni Yayi said at the weekend that the Republic of Benin will contribute 800 troops to the Miultinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF).
The new pledge of 550 is higher than the 250 troops the Nigerian neighbour promised earlier in the year by the its President.
The MNJTF is a regional force comprising of troops from countries in the Lake Chad Basin including Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon. Its mandate is to combat the Nigeria-based extremist Boko Haram sect.

President Yayi made the announcement on Saturday during a one-day visit by President Muhammadu Buhari to the Republic of Benin.
Deployment of the regional force has been delayed for lack of funds.
At a meeting in Cameroon in February, Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon and Niger agreed to deploy around 8,700 troops, with Benin pledging 250.
The six-year-old uprising has killed thousands of people and dislodged millions from their homes. It assumed a regional dimension this year with regular attacks in Niger, Cameroon  and  Chad.
President Buhari also visited Cameroon on Wednesday  in a bid to bolster support for the regional force. The President’s trip to Cameroon completed his consultations with leaders of the Lake Chad Basin nations.
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