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JOHANNESBURG - A Nigerian human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, has petitioned that country’s National Human Rights Commission to investigate the killing of 492 Muslim Shi'as by the army and police between 2014 and 2018. 

In his petition to the commission’s executive secretary Falana castigated the army and police over infringements of the fundamental rights of the Shi'as, the Premium Times reported on Tuesday. 

He further threatened to report the ”genocidal acts and crimes against humanity, being committed by well-known officials of the security agencies, to the special prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in contravention of article 7 of the Rome Statute. 

Approximately 492 Shi'as were killed in Zaria, Kaduna, Sokoto, Kano and Abuja by armed military and police personnel between 2014 and 2018, while others, who were arrested for demonstrating against the government, are alleged to have been tortured to death in detention camps, the report said.

One of the military generals involved in the killings justified the slaughter on the grounds that the Shi'as had plotted to assassinate him. 

However, a judicial commission of inquiry set up by the Kaduna state government to probe the attack found that the attacks unleashed on the Shi'as were premeditated by the Federal Government while relevant state governments have refused to prosecute well-known violators. 

African News Agency (ANA)