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Army vs Shiites US, UK call for transparent probe of Zaria killings

The US expressed dismay over the reported killing of many people in Zaria and called on the Federal Government to carry out a transparent probe on the incident.

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The United States and the United Kingdom to without further delay, investigate last week's clash between the Nigerian Army and the Shiite Islamic Movement in Zaria, Kaduna State.

In a statement by the US Embassy in Abuja on Wednesday, the US expressed dismay over the reported killing of many people in Zaria and called on the Federal Government to carry out a transparent probe on the incident.

“While many details of the incidents that reportedly began on December 12 remain unclear, we are dismayed to learn of multiple civilian deaths.  It is essential that all sides refrain from actions that further destabilize the situation.

“The United States calls on the Government of Nigeria to quickly, credibly, and transparently investigate these events in Zaria and hold to account any individuals found to have committed crimes.”

READ: Zaria killings - 'They shot at us, tried to bomb Buratai's vehicle', Military police say

In the same vein, the British High Commissioner, Paul Arkwright, in a separate statement expressed concern over the Zaria killings and urged agencies to conduct their operations within the ambit of the rule of law.

“Like many across Nigeria, I am following with concern the reports of violence in Zaria over the weekend between the Nigerian security forces and the Islamic Movement of Nigeria.  I am further concerned at reports that protests in Kaduna have turned violent.

“Nigeria’s religious and ethnic diversity adds a great deal to this country’s rich culture.  It is important, therefore, that Nigerians of all faiths are allowed to assemble and worship freely", the Commissioner said.

He also advised demonstrators to ensure peaceful protests and equally not engage in actions that violates the rule of law.

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