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04 November 2018, 06:16 | Erica Roy
Nigeria's army cites Trump to justify shooting Shia protesters
In a speech from the White House yesterday, Trump said USA troops-5,200 of which he deployed to the border earlier this week-won't tolerate members of the migrant caravan who throw stones. The tweet on the Nigerian army's Twitter account stated: "Please Watch and Make Your Deductions".
Speaking to the BBC, Nigeria Army spokesman Brigadier General John Agim said they posted the video in response to Amnesty International's criticism of the army's deadly attacks on Shia protesters. "What are they then saying?"
"It seems the Nigerian military are deliberately using tactics created to kill when dealing with IMN gatherings".
The Nigerian army says six protesters have been killed, but the protest group itself says dozens died, and rights group Amnesty International says the true number is 45.
According to the Times, videos posted to social media did show some protesters throwing rocks before being shot in the back as they ran away.
In Nigeria, Trump is a popular figure among many people who praise what they regard as his straightforwardness and frank talk despite his reported insult to the nation past year when he said Nigerians in the United States would never "go back to their huts" in Africa.
The US embassy in Nigeria said Thursday it was "concerned" and called for an investigation.
Agim said if David could kill Goliath with a stone, stones should be considered as weapons.
Human rights activists and many ordinary citizens were outraged at the military's response, which echoed a similar confrontation in 2015, when soldiers killed almost 350 protesters from the same group, the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, the largest and most recognizable face of Shia Islam in the country.
"Our soldiers sustained injuries".
"We intervened only because the IMN members are trying to harm our people, they are always meeting us.at security check points and trying to provoke us, they even burned a police vehicle".
The Nigerian military tells a different story.
"Not only did they use stones but they were carrying petrol bombs, machetes and knives, so yes, we consider them as being armed", he added. No president should be embracing the horrific use of excessive force. His recent inflammatory statements, made days before the U.S. midterm elections, have clearly been seized upon by some in the Nigerian military as an abusive new standard to which they would like to adhere.
Sunni jihadist group Boko Haram condemns Shias as heretics who should be killed.
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