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Amnesty Int’l faults police use of live bullets, water cannon on ‘unarmed’ Shittes’ protesters

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The Amnesty International has condemned the reaction of the police to the protests by members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) otherwise known as Shi’ites.

Recall that members of the religious sect and Nigeria Police Force clashed in Abuja over the group’s demand for the release of Shiite leader, Ibrahim El-Zakzaky.

However, in a statement signed by the Director, Amnesty International Nigeria, Osai Ojigho, the organisation said the crackdown on unarmed protesters put lives at risk.

Amnesty International said the iron fist applied against the protesters was unnecessary.

“This was a needless resort to violence by Nigerian police against a group of unarmed protestors. The IMN members gathered in Abuja were perfectly within their rights in demanding the release of their leader from a detention described by a federal court as both unlawful and unconstitutional.

“Although there were reports that stones were thrown by some protestors, there is no excuse for the use of live bullets, water cannon and tear gas. These were highly reckless tactics that could easily have resulted in fatalities. Nigerian authorities must adhere to the rule of law and respect the right to peaceful protest when policing these events,” Amnesty said.

It also described the arrest of 115 protesters as a worrying sign of repression of the IMN

 

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