The Islamic Movement in Nigeria, IMN popularly called Shiites has said that at least 13 of its members died in some northern states Wednesday.
A statement issued by IMN Spokesman, Ibrahim Musa said “Today Wednesday 10th Muharram, 1438 (12/10/16) was commemorated as Ashura in major cities across Nigeria by the Islamic Movement, but was however attacked by a combined force of security agents and some others dressed as hoodlums as well as paid thugs escorting them, resulting in deaths in Funtua, Sokoto and Kaduna of at least 13.
“The procession of the martyrdom of Imam Husain started in Funtua, Katsina state peacefully, but was later stopped by a team of policemen who were drafted to the scene to forcibly stop the march. After firing teargas canisters on the procession, the police opened fire with live bullets killing nine instantly and injuring about 20 others. There are reports that they went with some victims.
“In Kaduna, the peaceful Ashura procession was concluded without any incident. However, armed paid thugs attacked some members of IMN on their way to their various homes injuring them. This was followed by torching of Islamic Centre of IMN at Tudun wada Kaduna and subsequent demolition by a combined team of policemen and the Army. Three members of the Movement were killed there.
He said further that “The story was similar in Jos, Plateau state, where armed soldiers brutally attacked the Ashura procession, then proceeded to invade the Islamic Centre belonging to IMN, making some arrests while threatening to demolish the worship complex.
“Nevertheless, peaceful Ashura processions were conducted in Katsina, Yola, Potiskum, Suleja, Bauchi, Gombe, Lafia and Kano among many towns. In Kano though, the police arrested some Muslim sisters of IMN on their way to their various homes. These have been taken to Bompai police headquarters. A number of arrests were also made in Kaduna and were arraigned before the Shariah Court Daura road. These were sent to prison.
“We are following developments and will update as appropriate.