UK-based Muslim Commission drags Buhari, Buratai to ICC over Zaria massacre

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The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC), a United Kingdom-based Muslim advocacy organisation, has dragged President Muhammadu Buhari, the Kaduna State governor, Nasir El-Rufai, the chief of army staff, Tukur Buratai, to the International Criminal Court (ICC) over the December 12 to 14, 2015 massacre of members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN).

The organisation also asked the ICC to investigate the emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, and the emir of Zaria, Shehu Idris, for human rights violation and crimes against humanity over the alleged killing of at least 1,000 followers of the Shi’ite group led by Ibrahim El-Zakzaky.

Other army officers and persons the IHRC asked the ICC to probe for their roles in the massacre are: spokesperson of the Nigerian Army, Sani Usman, General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the Nigerian Army, Kaduna, Adeniyi Oyebade, the Commander Nigerian Depot, Chief of Defence Staff, Abayomi Olonisakin, Director Military Intelligence, Chief of Defence intelligence – AVM Riku Morgan, AK Ibrahim – Commander 1 Division Garrison, Nigerian Army, Kaduna and Col. F.M Babayo.

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The rest are Capt Ben, Adjutant Depot, Nigerian Army; Adeniyi Oyebade, General Officer Commanding, 1 Division Garrison Kaduna; Umar Labdo; Sambo Rigachukun; Bala Lau; Yahaya Jingir and; Kabir Gombe.

In a detailed report, the IHRC argued that attacks of the army on members of IMN between December 12 and 14 in Zaria qualify as crime against humanity and therefore called on the ICC to initiate an investigation into the incident.

According to the IHRC, “ICC prosecutor should open a preliminary examination into the incidents that occurred between the 12th and 14th December 2015 in Zaria, Kaduna State”.

It also demanded that the “prosecutor expand(s) its monitoring activities on Nigeria and the army’s involvement in attacks against the IMN that occurred in the period between 2014 and 2015.”

Furthermore, the IHRC asked “the ICC Prosecutor to issue a preventive statement saying that he is monitoring the Nigerian crisis and is aware of the commission of crimes and warn the perpetrators about their criminal liability.”

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