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Police, Shiites clash in Abuja, one feared dead

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The Nigerian Police Force and members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) have again clashed during a protest in Abuja, on Tuesday.

The police officers clashed with the Shi’ites protesters who were demanding the release of their leader, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, and his wife, Zeenat from detention.

The protest, which started near the head office of the National Human Rights Commission on Aguiyi Ironsi Street, Maitama, escalated when the police stormed the area, and fired shots and teargas canisters to disperse the crowd.

One Shi’ite member was said to have died as the police dispersed the protesters, IMN confirmed in a statement signed by the sect secretary, Abdullahi Musa.

“Today, January 26, 2021, police waylaid protesters at the crossroads of Transcorp Hilton, with the match from National Human Rights Commission,” the statement read.

“The police shot many tear-gas canisters indiscriminately, dousing their victims with the gas before bullets started flying all around and one protester confirmed the death.

“The Police seriously maimed numerous protesters; critical gunshot injuries needing urgent treatment were glaring.

“Unfortunately, these victims, with every likelihood, may not even receive the medical or surgical treatment their condition required, only to be taken to, and equally be dumped, at the SWAT headquarters. They should be released,” Musa noted.

The sect noted that if their daily protest is deemed as a slap on the tyranny and persecution wrist, their leader should be released immediately and unconditionally.

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