Shiites protest: 400 arrested and police vehicles burnt - SyCtRenDs

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Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Shiites protest: 400 arrested and police vehicles burnt



Policemen shoot tear gas to disperse members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, during the sect’s protest in Abuja yesterday.

Protesting members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), a Shiites group, clashed with the security again in Abuja, burning a police vehicle in the process.

There were pockets of clashes in different locations within Abuja city centre, including Maitama, Asokoro, Wuse 2, as the Shiites protested the continued incarceration of their leader Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky.


The protesters, who were barred from entering the city centre on Monday, gathered secretly and surprised security operatives by sneaking into the FCT. Once gathered at a location they would commence singing protest songs and chanting, before security operative intercepts them.

Members of the group threw stones and other objects at the security men, causing chaos in Abuja yesterday.


The police said 400 members of the group were arrested following Tuesday’s clashes in the city centre.

The FCT Commissioner of Police for the FCT, Bala Ciroma, said at a briefing that 31 bottles of petrol bombs and other dangerous weapons were also recovered from two of the suspects.

He said the IMN members, during their procession at Wuse 2, burnt down a Police Rapid Response Squad (RRS) patrol vehicle deployed at Ademola Adetokunmbo Crescent.

Ciroma said one of the two suspects arrested with petrol bombs, Mustapha Abdullahi, 20, of Ungwan Gwari, Suleja of Niger State, had in his possession 18 bottles of the explosives, two lighters and a dagger.

He was reportedly arrested at Tipper Garage, Katampe area of Abuja after the taxi he boarded was stopped by policemen on stop and search patrol.

The other suspect, Abdullahi Umar, 22 of Gadan Karte, Illela LGA of Sokoto State, was reportedly arrested at Dakwa FCT-Niger boundary with 13 bottles of petrol bombs.

“During interrogation, the suspect confessed that he arrived Suleja from Sokoto State on Sunday to join other members of the group in the protest. He also confessed that he was ferrying the petrol bomb to FCT to confront law enforcement agents.

Umar, the suspect from Sokoto State, told Daily Trust that he just got admitted into the state’s health college and that he had the petrol bombs with him so as to protect himself.

He said this was because “soldiers came on Saturday and just started shooting us at Zuba and we didn’t do anything to them. I brought it (petrol bombs) because when they start shooting us, I will just put it on the grass and our brothers will get a way to escape.”

Daily Trust reports that many members of the IMN were reportedly killed during the clashes in the last three days.


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