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CSO calls on ICC to arrest, investigate Gen Burutai over alleged human rights abuses

By Gabriel Ewepu – Abuja

A Civil Society Organisation, Concerned Nigerians, CN, Thursday, called on the International Criminal Court, ICC, to investigate, arrest and prosecute former Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai (Rtd), over alleged human rights abuses while serving in the Nigerian military as Chief of Army Staff.



This was contained in a letter signed by the Convener, Comrade Deji Adeyanju, with the subject, ‘A Call for the Investigation and Arrest of Tukur Buratai’ and addressed to Chief Prosecutor, Office of the Prosecutor, International Criminal Court, The Hague, The Netherlands, Mrs Fatou Bensouda, which President Muhammadu Buhari was copied.

The group alleged that in 2015, Gen Buratai ordered members of the Nigerian army to kill over 300 defenseless Nigerian Shiite Muslims; ordered the Nigerian soldiers to kill hundreds of Nigerian citizens of South-Eastern extraction, in the guise of searching for members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB); and personally ordered the killing of the innocent protesters at Lekki toll gate, Lagos, on October 20, 2020.

Part of the letter reads, “We write to call on the International Criminal Court and all lovers of democracy and human rights in the world to immediately investigate, arrest and prosecute Lieutenant General Buratai (Rtd) who was just relieved of his duty as Chief of Army Staff for crimes against humanity and the Nigerian people.

“It will be recalled that sometimes in 2015, Lieutenant General Buratai (Rtd) ordered members of the Nigerian army to kill over 300 defenseless Nigerian Shiite Muslims on the unjustifiable ground that they “touched a general’s chest”.

“That event has been appropriately tagged the Zaira massacre and it has further worsened the insecurity situation in Nigeria. Shortly thereafter, Lieutenant Buratai (Rtd) ordered the Nigerian soldiers to kill hundreds of Nigerian citizens of South-Eastern extraction, in the guise of searching for members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

“It is particularly noteworthy to mention that as at the time Lieutenant General Buratai (Rtd) ordered the massacre of IPOB members, the group had not been proscribed by the Nigeria Government.

“Additionally, we have been able to gather from different independent sources, that Lieutenant General Buratai (Rtd) personally ordered the killing of the innocent protesters at Lekki toll gate, Lagos, on October 20, 2020.”

The letter concluded by pointing that it will, “Serve as a deterrent to members of the Nigerian Armed Forces and their civilian collaborators who have made it a point of duty to indiscriminately abuse citizens’ human rights.”

Vanguard News Nigeria

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