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Amnesty International expresses concerns over Shiites, soldiers clash

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Amnesty International Nigeria has expressed concerns over the clash between members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria known as Shiites and officers of the Nigerian army.

Members of Shiites had on Monday, in Abuja held a march to protest the detention of their leader El-Zakzaky and other members by the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, since 2015.

The protest ended a violent one as security operatives reportedly shot bullets at close range to unarmed protesters.

However, Amnesty International blames the government for the total outcome of the protest.

“Nigerian soldiers frequent use of deadly force on IMN protests and processions always lead to murder of men, women and children. The Nigerian government decision to send in the military to respond to IMN protests, seems to be, in large part to blame for excessive bloodshed.’’ Amnesty International said in a tweet.

The Amnesty International Nigeria also describes the actions from the Nigerian army to be unacceptable. The human rights organisation accused the Nigerian Army of seeking to murder the protesters rather than seeking to maintain order.

Amnesty International tweeted: “Fatalities as a result of soldiers use of maximum force in confrontation with IMN protesters demonstrates that the security forces were not seeking to maintain public order but to murder.”

The Nigerian Army, however, in a statement have claimed that the Shiite protesters tried to cart away ammunition and missiles they were escorting.

“This led to the troops opening fire to extricate themselves,” the army said in a statement.

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