March 3, 2024

US trains Nigeria on enhancing capabilities to investigate chemical, biological weapons

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Etim Ekpimah

The United States conducted a training workshop in Abuja, Nigeria September 19-23, 2022, with partners from Nigerian domestic security services, law enforcement, and first responders, aimed at enhancing their ability to investigate terrorist plots involving chemical and biological weapons (CBW). This is part of a series of training the Department of State is sponsoring across Africa.

Recent events in the Middle East have demonstrated the real threat of terrorist acquisition and use of chemical and biological weapons on the battlefield or in ungoverned spaces.

These attacks have highlighted the need for countries to have effective national responses, particularly a strong investigative framework and established communication channels among technical experts, law enforcement, and national security stakeholders.

As part of the training in Nigeria, U.S. technical experts provided local officials with guidance and information to establish universally adopted crime scene management protocols to ensure that any evidence collected at a CBW crime scene can be used in a court of law and ultimately bring the perpetrator to justice.

Local officials had the opportunity to navigate a simulated CBW crime scene in full personal protective equipment, practice documenting a crime scene, and conduct proper decontamination procedures.

The engagement between U.S. and Nigerian experts also involved sharing best practices and lessons learned, resulting in an increased level of preparedness against potential CBW terrorism plots or attacks.

The United States is committed to working with allies and partners to counter the threat posed by CBW terrorism.

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