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20 feared killed as soldiers arrest Shi’ite leader in raid



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Less than 24-hour the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai escaped assassination in the hands of Islamic Movement of Nigeria, a group propagating the spread of Shi’ite Islam in Nigeria, Ibrahim El-Zakzaky have been arrested by soldiers of the Nigerian Army.

It was learnt that during the raid on his house, the head of the medical team of the sect, Mustapha Saidu and several others were killed during the operation.

It was learnt that the Nigerian army and members of the sect had been trading blames on who first fired the first shot that led to the death of members of the sect on Saturday, December 12.

On the part of the army, the Shi’ite followers allegedly made attempt on the life of Lt Gen Buratai, an allegation that has been reportedly dismissed by the sect stating that the troops actually decided to attack ‘defenseless people’.

It was gathered that soldiers storm the residence of the leader of the sect throughout the night as heavy shootings and sounds of explosions were heard in the area around Sokoto road, where Hussainiyya stayed.

People around the area explained that armoured tanks were seen demolishing the Hussainiyya shrine and the residence of the leader of the sect.

Also, a source at the military hospital in Chindit Barracks Depot of the Nigerian army in Zaria said that 19 bodies  were received after the raid.

It would be recalled that the Shiite sect on the orders of their leader, Alzak-zaky, had on Saturday, 12 December attacked the convoy of Lt Gen Buratai in Kaduna state on his way to the palace of the Emir of Zazzau to pay homage.

In his reaction in a statement, the Director, Army Public Relations, According to the official statement, Colonel Sani Usman, said the attack took place while the COAS was on his way to pay homage on the Emir of Zazzau and attend the Passing Out Parade (POP) of 73 Regular Recruits Intake of Depot Nigerian Army in Zaria.

He added that the soldiers had no choice than to defend themselves since the hoodlums barricaded the road and opened fire on them. He explained they did all they had to do in self-defence and to protect the COAS in consonance with the Rule of Engagement and Code of Conduct.