- BACKGROUND INFORMATION
National interests are those important goals that are significant to the survival of states. National interest has been defined by statesmen and scholars as the goals and aspiration of a sovereign entity (ies) in its interaction with other states within the international system.
The term national interest is a controversial concept in the international system because a state has variegated goals and purpose given their different views within the international system. The common interest could be security, protection of human rights of citizens, economy, national sovereignty, military, technological advancement and the welfare of the entire nation state. Since national interests are important to state for their survival, states therefore relate with one another for survival meaning that, in the international system there is has no permanent friend, no permanent enemy. This study therefore examines the interest of states like Britain, France, Russia and the United State during the Nigeria civil war (1967-1970) which broke out between the Nigeria military government and the Biafra government.
This study, focuses briefly on the historical development of Nigeria and how it was colonized by the British for its selfish interest, as well as the history of political development in Nigeria; how it led to an unhealthy rivalry among ethnic groups, as well as the remote and immediate causes of the civil war.
Furthermore, it is important to know that some domestic wars attract international response which involves the external powers and could be seen as an opportunity to attain their interest.