Army vs Shi’ites: Military speaks on clash with El-Zakzaky group in Abuja

The commander, Guards Brigade, Brigadier General U. T. Musa, has confirmed the Monday clash between members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) and men of the Nigerian Army.

Unspecified number of persons were said to have been killed, several others injured, while some motorists had their vehicles destroyed by the Shiites group who threw stones and other dangerous items at innocent people.

Musa, however, said normalcy had been restored in the area and urged people to go about their lawful business.

He warned that the brigade would not tolerate a situation where innocent persons were attacked without the slightest provocation.

Gen. Musa said the standing rule of the Brigade was that nobody was allowed entry into the city of Abuja without due permission, adding that the brigade would do all in its powers to ensure no persons or group violated the order.

Narrating what happened, the commander said it was actually the Shiite group that opened fire at the soldiers after they refused them to pass through and that the soldiers had no option than to defend themselves.

Gen. Musa said “the Shiites came in their thousands stoning soldiers, police and even motorists plying the road and every body.

“So, we operated as per the Rule of Engagement, so that was what happened.

“This whole mess started about 3:30 or thereabout and it started from Nyanya, where they stoned the police and overpowered them.

“You know we have a checkpoint around Karu bridge and we have a rule that nobody enters into this city without permission so it was actually at the checkpoints that this thing happened.

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“They were in their thousands chanting and stoning everybody and destroying everybody’s vehicle along the road and we cannot take that.

“We have restored normalcy and traffic is flowing now.”


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