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Police arrest 19 members of Shi’ite movement while protesting in Abuja



Shi'ite movement members during a protest in Abuja
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Police personnel from the Federal Capital Territory, FCT Command, on Thursday arrested 19 members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), also known as the Shi’ite movement, over an “unlawful procession”.

The protesters have earlier been warned of dire consequences after the sect announced last week that they were going to resume protests in the nation’s capital to demand the release of their leader, Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky’s international passport, which was confiscated by the Federal Government.

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The arrest of 19 members of the Shi’ite movement was confirmed in a statement by the Spokesperson of the FCT Police Command, SP Josephine Adeh, on Thursday,

She explained that the IMN members numbering over 400, staged a protest from the Federal High Court to Eagle Square, blocking vehicular movements, thereby causing public disturbances against the earlier warning.

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Meanwhile, the Federal High Court on Thursday rejected an application filed by El-Zakzaky asking the Department Of State Services (DSS) to release his passport and that of his wife, having said they planned to travel abroad for medical attention.

The presiding Judge, Justice Obiora Egwuatu, while ruling declined El-Zakzaky, saying that the applicants failed to prove that the DSS took the passports away when he came back from his last trip from India.

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The members who were earlier in the morning to hear the outcome of the Court ruling, upon hearing that the Court rejected El-Zakzaky’s application, began their protest.

The Police image maker explained that the members of the sect pelted men of the force with stones as they tried to resist arrest.

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