Police disperse Nigerian ‘Free Zakzaky’ protest in Abuja

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SHAFAQNA – The Police dispersed members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria in Abuja as they once again trooped out to demand the release of their leader, Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, on Monday.

The protesters marched through the streets with placards but were dispersed by the police who fired teargas and water cannons as they made their way towards the headquarters of the National Human Rights Commission, Channelstv reported.

The group has continued to protest across Nigeria since the arrest and detention of Sheikh El-Zazaki in December 2016, after a bloody clash between his followers and the Nigerian Army in Zaria, Kaduna State.

The prominent cleric and his wife were taken into custody on December 14, 2115, after deadly clashes between the supporters of the IMN movement and Nigerian troops.

Nearly 350 members of the Shia movement were killed in the clashes. The sheikh was brutally injured and his house was reportedly destroyed by the army in the incident.

The judge said he had given 45 days for authorities to provide new accommodation for the Zakzaky family. The accommodation is to be in the town of Zaria, Kaduna state, where the family were detained, or in other parts of the state or alternatively any other part of northern Nigeria.

Kolawole said the State Security Service would pay each of Sheikh Zakzaky and his wife $78,984 in compensation for the violation of their rights by being held in unlawful custody for nearly a year.

Nearly 100 IMN supporters were killed when Nigerian forces fired live rounds and tear gas at mourners during a peaceful march ahead of the Arbaeen mourning rituals, which mark 40 days after the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Hussein (AS), the third Shia Imam. Authorities also destroyed a number of buildings belonging to the IMN.

The Nigerian government has stepped up its crackdown on the IMN since the December 2015 deadly incident.

Members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) on Wednesday, April 26, occupied the streets of Abuja, Nigeria’s capital city to mark the 500 days in detention of Sheikh Zakzaky.

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