Nigeria: Elections and Issues for Congress [January 19, 2012]   [open pdf - 445KB]

"Nigeria, Africa's largest producer of oil and its largest democracy, is one of the U.S. government's key strategic partners on the continent. It is Africa's most populous country, with over 155 million people, roughly half Muslim and half Christian, and its second-largest economy. Diplomatic relations with Nigeria, which is among the top five oil exporters to the United States, are strong, and the country is a major recipient of U.S. foreign assistance. After 16 years of military rule, Nigeria made the transition to civilian governance in 1999, and emerged as a powerful actor in African politics. Nigeria's government has mediated disputes in several African countries, and the country ranks fourth among troop contributors to U.N. peacekeeping missions. […] The Obama Administration has been supportive of Nigeria's recent reform initiatives, including anti-corruption efforts, economic and electoral reforms, energy sector privatization, and programs to promote peace and development in the Niger Delta. In 2010, the Administration established the U.S.-Nigeria Binational Commission, a strategic dialogue to address issues of mutual concern. Congress regularly monitors Nigerian political developments and has expressed concerns with corruption and human rights abuses. Congress provides oversight for over $600 million in U.S. foreign assistance programs in Nigeria--one of the largest U.S. assistance packages in Africa."

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CRS Report for Congress, RL33964
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