Nigerian Army Justifies Killing Protesters With Trump Video on Stone-Throwing Migrants

04 November, 2018, 23:48 | Author: Carlos George
  • Nigeria Army tweets Trump video to justify armed protest clampdown

The Nigerian Army has once again justified its killing of some members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), widely known as Shiites, saying they were not unarmed.

When United States President Donald Trump said yesterday that the USA military would consider rocks thrown by US-bound migrants and asylum seekers as firearms - implying that soldiers should open fire in response - his comments reverberated globally.

The Nigerian army posted - then later deleted - a video on Twitter of President Donald Trump bashing the migrant caravan heading north through Mexico.

"We're not going to put up with that".

"They want to throw rocks at our military, our military fights back", Trump told another reporter at the news conference. "We're going to consider - and I told them, consider it a rifle".

The number of Shia Muslim protesters killed by Nigeria's army in the capital, Abuja, in clashes which began at the weekend, has not been independently verified.

Amnesty International (AI) has urged the United States of America and Nigeria to stop trying to justify human right abuses but to as a matter of priority abide by international human rights law and standards.

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"Please Watch and Make your Deductions", read the tweet, which included a video clip in which Trump says: "Anybody throwing stones, rocks. we will consider that a firearm because there is not much difference". "So, a stone is a weapon", he said.

Amnesty International had said on Wednesday, October 31, that it had strong evidence that police and soldiers used automatic weapons against IMN members and killed about 45 people in an "unconscionable use of deadly force by soldiers and police".

Speaking to the BBC, Nigeria Army spokesman Brigadier General John Agim said they posted the video in response to Amnesty International's criticism of the army's deadly attacks on Shia protesters. IMN says that at least 42 people were killed by Nigerian forces on Monday and Tuesday.

The Army has previously tweeted photos of wounded soldiers who suffered from rock pelting religious protesters seeking the release of their detained leader.

The United States embassy in Nigeria said Thursday it was "concerned" and called for an investigation.

In a statement made available to SaharaReporters, Amnesty International had condemned the Army's attempt to justify the killings, noting that shooting at the protesters was a violation of their human rights.

Critics have accused Trump of using the caravan for fearmongering and escalating his anti-immigrant rhetoric to rally voters behind the Republican Party in advance of Tuesday's midterm elections, which is considered by many to be a referendum on the president's first two years in office. "Many of these shootings clearly amount to extrajudicial executions", said Osai Ojigho Director of Amnesty International Nigeria in a statement.

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