The Al-Khoei Foundation expresses its deep concerns on the arrest and wellbeing of a prominent Nigerian Shia leader, Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky.
During a raid carried out by the Nigerian army on Sunday 13 December 2015 on the residence of Sheikh Zakzaky in Northern Nigeria, at least 20 of his Shia followers have reportedly been killed including the Sheikh’s wife and son.
The army was also responsible for another attack on Shias last year that killed over 20 civilians including two other sons of Sheikh Zakzaky. This comes as the extremist terrorist group Boko Haram is also targeting the small Shia minority in the country. Just over two weeks ago 22 Shias were killed by a Boko Haram suicide bombing on a procession organised to commemorate Ashura.
While there are different claims as to what actually led to the incident, the Al-Khoei Foundation welcomes the statement of Sultan of Sokoto and leader of Muslims in Nigeria, Sheikh Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, and strongly urges the Nigerian authorities to release Sheikh Zakzaky and protect all faith groups in the country including Shia Muslims and work with them to defeat extremism and sectarian politics.