Anti-Shiite protests spread to more states, group claims 13 members killed
The anti-Shiites protests which started in Kaduna has spread to more states in the north leading to the death of more members of the Shiite sect. Ibrahim Musa, President, Islamic Media Forum, said in a statement on Wednesday evening that at least 13 sect members had been killed in Funtua, Sokoto and Kaduna. He alleged that during the commemoration of Ashura in major cities across the country by the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) – the Shiites – they were “attacked by a combined force of security agents and some others dressed as hoodlums as well as paid thugs escorting them, resulting in deaths in Funtua, Sokoto and Kaduna of at least 13.”
The statement said: “The procession of the martyrdom of Imam Husain started in Funtua, Katsina State, peacefully, but was later stopped by a team of policemen who were drafted to the scene to forcibly stop the march.
“After firing tear gas canisters on the procession, the police opened fire with live bullets killing nine instantly and injuring about 20 others. There are reports that they went with some victims.
“However, armed paid thugs attacked some members of IMN on their way to their various homes injuring them.
“This was followed by torching of Islamic Centre of IMN at Tudun Wada Kaduna and subsequent demolition by a combined team of policemen and the Army.
“Three members of the Movement were killed there.”
“The story was similar in Jos, Plateau State, where armed soldiers brutally attacked the Ashura procession, then proceeded to invade the Islamic Centre belonging to IMN, making some arrests while threatening to demolish the worship complex.
“Nevertheless, peaceful Ashura processions were conducted in Katsina, Yola, Potiskum, Suleja, Bauchi, Gombe, Lafia and Kano among many towns. In Kano though, the police arrested some Musulim sisters of IMN on their way to their various homes.
“These have been taken to Bompai police headquarters. A number of arrests were also made in Kaduna and were arraigned before the Shariah Court Daura road. These were sent to prison.
“We are following developments and will update as appropriate.”