Members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, also known as Shi’ites yesterday clashed with the police as they took to the streets of Abuja, the nation’s capital, and Kaduna in processions to mark the International Quds Day.
The Quds day procession, observed annually by the Shi’ites every last Friday of the month of Ramadan, began in Abuja at the Customs office on Abidjan Street, Wuse 3 and through Wuse Market before it met with resistance from the police.
Streets in Wuse were deserted to the Berger Roundabout for over an hour as gunshots were heard while motorists and passersby ran for cover. Many people were reportedly injured.
In Kaduna, close to 20 members sustained injuries in the clash with the police.
One of the leaders of the movement who addressed journalists, Engr. Yunusa Lawal, said they were on peaceful procession as part of the activities marking the day to say no to the continued occupation of Palestine by Israel before the police attacked their members.
“About 20 of our members suffered varying degrees of injuries with two of them including a woman sustaining gunshot injury, but so far, we cannot ascertain whether there is any casualty or not,” he said.
“We condemn the continued incursions into Al-Aqsa mosque and occupation of Palestine by the apartheid Zionist Israel regime and we support the oppressed people of Palestine in their just struggle.
We also condemn the continued denial of Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky and his wife, Muallima Zeenah, their travel passports to enable the couple to travel for medical treatment,” he said.
When Kaduna State Police Command spokesman DSP Muhammad Jalige was called to react to the clash, he did not pick his calls and failed to respond to text message sent to his phone at the time of filing this report.