Foreign minister begins Africa trip

Swiss Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey is in Nigeria on the first leg of a three-country visit to West Africa.

This content was published on April 15, 2009 - 19:01

On Wednesday evening she had talks in the Nigerian capital, Abuja, with her Nigerian counterpart, Ojo Maduekwe, finance minister Mansur Muhtar and the governor of the central bank, Charles Chukwuma Soludo.

Ahead of the meetings, the foreign ministry said they would focus on bilateral relations, migration and Switzerland's role as a financial centre.

Calmy-Rey will go on to Mali and Burkina Faso, both of which are priority countries for Swiss development cooperation.

In Mali she will also raise the issue of a Swiss couple kidnapped in the east of the country in January, along with a German woman and a British man. A month ago the north African branch of al-Qaida claimed to be holding them.

swissinfo with agencies

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