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Toronto rally condemns army massacre of Muslims in Nigeria

Crescent International

The massacre of Muslims may have occurred in Nigeria but it aroused the concern of people from all walks of life worldwide. Rallies protesting the horrific massacre have been held in London (UK), Washington DC and New York (US) and Toronto (Canada). There have also been protest rallies in Iran, Pakistan, India and a host of other countries. In each locale, there were calls for the arrest and trial of the Nigerian army chief Tukur Buratai.

Toronto, December 19, 2015, 22:13 EST

Hundreds of Canadians of all faiths and backgrounds braved bitterly cold temperatures to join a rally condemning the brutal massacre of innocent Muslims in Nigeria. Organized at very short notices, hundreds of people among them many women and children gathered at Toronto’s Dundas Square on Saturday December 19 afternoon to condemn the barbaric behavior of the Nigerian army last weekend.

Speakers drew attention to the fact that the Nigerian army has not been able to tackle the terrorist groupBoko Haram that has indulged in gruesome killings and kidnappings of hundreds of girls yet it was quick to massacre unarmed members of the Islamic movement in Nigeria.

Repeatedly speakers expressed grave concern about the well being of Sheikh Ibrahim el-Zakzaky, the leader of the Islamic movement, and his wife Zeenat, both of whom were shot and wounded. Their last remaining son, Hamad was martyred. Last year, three of his sons were shot and killed by the Nigerian army during the Quds Day rally.

Following speeches, a resolution was presented that among other points demanded the arrest and trial of the Nigerian army chief General Tukur Buratai. Text of the resolution is given below:

  1. The Nigerian army must immediately and unconditionally release the injured leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky and all of his family members and followers that they have arrested.
  2. An Independent Commission of Inquiry must be set up by the Nigerian government to investigate and try the army chief Tukur Buratai and those officers and soldiers involved in this horrific crime against humanity for ordering the current massacre and the massacre that was perpetrated at the Quds rally in August 2014.
  3. The international criminal court should issue arrest warrants against Buratai and the officers involved in this massacre and put them on trial for war crimes.
  4. The Nigerian army should focus its resources on fighting the Boko Haram terrorists rather than turning its guns on peaceful citizens that it is obliged to protect. This same army that committed this shameless massacre against innocent civilians was unable to free hundreds of Nigerian school girls kidnapped openly by the Boko Haram terrorists.

Every day that Buratai spends in office after the Zaria killings, is an affront to the people of Nigeria. The President of Nigeria must, as a matter of urgency, immediately relieve Buratai of his position as his conduct in this case has portrayed him as being totally unfit to occupy any public position of responsibility.

Protesters demanded to see Sheikh Zakzaky in public to determine the extent of his injuries, to confirm that he is still alive and to be given the opportunity to state his side of the story.

So far we all have only been fed the self-serving lies of the military. These are unacceptable.

The rally participants also signed two huge petitions that will be presented to the Nigerian High Commission in Ottawa.

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