A global rights group, Amnesty International has expressed concern over the killing of members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) by Nigerian security forces on Tuesday.
Some members of IMN, who are Shiites, were killed by soldiers and police during an annual procession embarked upon by the religious faithful.
Reacting to the killing in Twitter posts, using #IMN8KilledInAbuja on Tuesday, Amnesty International said it “is gravely concerned over the killing of at least 8 members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) during the Arba’een – an annual religious symbolic trek along Gwarinpa Expressway, Abuja.
“They were perfectly within their rights to hold a religious procession and protest and there was no evidence they posed an imminent threat to life.
“Nigerian authorities must put an end to the deadly crackdown on members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria that has been ongoing since 2015. Resorting to lethal force against peaceful protesters is a clear violation of Nigerian and international human rights law.
“Horrific accounts from eyewitness and confirmed that; security officials fired live ammunitions, flogged, stabbed and teargassed the peaceful protesters. #IMN8KilledInAbuja
“Verified videos show security forces deliberately attacking unarmed protesters, and another video shows a security officer stab an elderly man several times as his colleague kicked him on the head in front of a bank in Gwarinpa, Abuja. #IMN8KilledInAbuja.”
In what has become known as Zaria Massacre, the Nigerian Army on December 12, 2015, in Zaria, Kaduna State, killed over 300 Shiites and secretly buried their bodies in a mass grave.
The Army claimed that it had responded to an attempt to assassinate a former Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, by the Shiites.
The Shiites have since denied the allegation.