News Alerts

30 Oct 2018 | 06:13 PM UTC

Nigeria: Violent protest continues in Abuja October 30 /update 2

Nigeria News Alert

Soldiers reportedly fire on IMN protesters in continued clashes in Abuja on October 30; additional related protests possible in the coming days

TIMEFRAME expected from 10/29/2018, 12:00 AM until 10/31/2018, 11:59 PM (Africa/Lagos). COUNTRY/REGION Abuja

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Event

Security forces clashed with Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) protesters in Abuja as demonstrations continued on Tuesday, October 30. Local reports claim police fired live munitions and tear gas on crowds after protesters reportedly threw rocks towards security barriers in Wuse 2 district. IMN claims at least one person sustained fatal gunshot wounds, although the government has not confirmed any casualties. Additional demonstrations by IMN supporters are possible in the coming days. A heightened security presence and localized traffic disruptions are to be expected near demonstrations. Further clashes between protesters and security forces cannot be ruled out.

Context

The demonstrations demanding the release of IMN leader Ibrahim El-Zakzaky have continued for a second straight day following deadly clashes on October 29; protesters claim security forces killed as many as 24 people, although the government has confirmed three deaths. Zakzaky, a prominent Shi'a cleric, was arrested in December 2015 when soldiers raided his home in Zaria (Kaduna state), killing a number of IMN followers in the process. The Nigerian Federal High Court ordered Zakzaky's release in December 2016, but he has nevertheless remained in detention.

IMN protests occur on a regular basis, especially in Abuja, Kaduna, and Kano states, despite a ban on the group's activities.

Advice

Individuals in Abuja are advised to avoid all protests due to the risk of associated violence, plan alternative routes, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities. In general, the security environment in Nigeria is complex and is particularly challenging in the northeast and extreme south of the country due to the presence of armed groups, high crime rates, and the risk of kidnapping.

Some Western governments consequently advise against travel to certain areas of the northeast (e.g. states of Borno, Yobe, Gombe, Bauchi, and Jigawa as well as parts of Kano and Adamawa states) and the southern Niger Delta region (e.g. states of Delta, Bayelsa, Akwa Ibom, and Rivers). Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel to these areas.

 

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