ABUJA, July 22 (Reuters) – Reuters correspondents saw Nigerian police and a group of Shi’ite Muslim protesters clash in the capital Abuja on Monday, with at least one marcher appearing to be dead.
The Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) group have regularly taken to the streets of Abuja in the last few years calling for the release of their leader, Ibrahim Zakzaky, who has been in detention since 2015.
Clashes between police and Zakzaky’s supporters have raised fears that IMN may become radicalised – just as the Sunni Muslim militant group Boko Haram turned violent in 2009 after police killed their leader.
Reuters correspondents heard gunshots and saw at least two vehicles on fire and bloodstains on the road.
“The police are taking adequate measures to bring the situation under control,” the Nigeria Police Force tweeted, referring to the unrest as a “violent protest”. (Reporting by Afolabi Sotunde, Paul Carsten, Camillus Eboh and Abraham Achirga in Abuja; Additional reporting by Alexis Akwagyiram and Libby George in Lagos; Editing by Kevin Liffey)