Iranians Stage Rally in Protest at Shiite Killings in Nigeria
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A group of Iranian people held a rally in front of the Nigerian embassy in Tehran on Tuesday to condemn the heavy crackdown against Shiite Muslims in the African country in recent days and the Nigerian army’s massacre of dozens of Shiites.
The demonstrators called on the Nigerian government to address the attacks on Shiite Muslims.
They also voiced support for prominent Shiite Nigerian cleric Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky, who has been wounded in an attack by the military forces on his house in Nigeria’s northern city of Zaria and is now in custody.
In a statement at the end of the rally, the protestors slammed the recent attacks on Nigerian Shiite people as part of a “Takfiri-Zionist” plot, saying the US and Israeli regimes have the blood of the victims on their hands.
They also called on the Abuja government to prevent harassment of the Shiite Muslims.
On Saturday night, Nigerian military forces surrounded the house of Sheikh Zakzaky in Zaria. Heavy fighting broke out afterwards between the government forces and members of the Islamic Movement, which stretched into the early hours of Sunday.
Director of a local hospital has reported that at least 60 people have been killed this weekend when the Nigerian army raided the Shiite community and arrested Sheikh Zakzaky.
The Nigerian Army alleges that members of the movement were involved in an attack on the convoy of the Chief of Nigeria’s Army Staff, Tukur Buratai. The Islamic Movement has vehemently denied the allegations.