October 22, 2020

#EndSARS: US, African Union condemned police brutality in Nigeria


The United States and the African Union has required an end to the violence in Nigeria. Fights against police brutality have gotten destructive as of late. 


The U.S. State Department on Thursday denounced "exorbitant power" by Nigerian military powers on unarmed regular people and called for limitation. 


It comes two days after officers started shooting at dissidents showing against police brutality in Lagos.


U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a statement;

“We welcome an immediate investigation into any use of excessive force by members of the security forces. Those involved should be held to account in accordance with Nigerian law,” 


Pompeo's calls repeated an announcement from the African Union on Thursday asked a conclusion to the violence in Nigeria following quite a while of savage fights. 


It follows the death of 12 individuals during a crackdown by security powers against shows in the commercial capital Lagos on Tuesday, a noteworthy weakening in the effectively tense circumstance.


Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat urged 

"all political and social actors to reject the use of violence and respect human rights and the rule of law."


At least 56 people have died across the country since the protests began on October 8, with about 38 killed nationwide on Tuesday alone, according to Amnesty International.


Human Rights Watch also corroborated reports that the Nigerian army had opened fire on protesters on Tuesday in what the NGOs described as "a shooting spree."


The use of lethal force by security forces drew international condemnation, with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet saying it could have been premeditated.


The Nigerian army took to Twitter repeatedly on Wednesday, labeling various reports about Tuesday's alleged incident as "fake news."



The African Union did not single out Tuesday's violence in its statement, but welcomed the government's move to disband the much-loathed Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).


Anger over abuses committed by the unit sparked widespread protests some two weeks that drew thousands to the streets.


Human rights group Amnesty International released a damning report in June this year in which it said it had documented 82 cases of police brutality in Nigeria between 2017 and 2020.


"Detainees in SARS custody have been subjected to a variety of methods of torture including hanging, mock execution, beating, punching and kicking, burning with cigarettes, waterboarding, near-asphyxiation with plastic bags, forcing detainees to assume stressful bodily positions and sexual violence," the report said.


jf/msh (AFP, Reuters)

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