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Rights group demands probe into terrorists' shooting

08 April 2014, 13:59

Abuja - Access to Justice, the human rights advocacy group, has called on government to set up a panel to investigate the killing of 21 Boko Haram suspects at the State Security Service (SSS) detention facility in Abuja.

Secret Police Authority in Abuja had claimed that the 21 suspected Boko Haram members were killed during the exchange of gunfire that allegedly followed an attempted jailbreak.

Operatives claimed that some of its officials sustained several degrees of gun wounds during the battle.

Access to Justice has however faulted the account of the jailbreak rendered by the secret police authorities as it noted that many questions were left unanswered.

It queried the SSS account of events.

The group pointed out that official account of the incident said that shots were fired at a detainee but did not state what other detainees did to deserve being killed.

“A literal interpretation of this statement is that other detainees who posed no danger to the DSS or its operatives, or, who, in fact made no attempts to escape from detention were fired at to prevent them from even contemplating the possibility of fleeing. There is no clear justification provided by the DSS or the Nigerian State for the killing of such a multitude of vulnerable persons," it said.

The group has therefore called for an inquiry which must be free from external influence or control and undertaken by people of unquestionable integrity.

The group also urged that the results of the inquiry be made public and any persons found to have killed without clear, reasonable and lawful justification be brought to account and to justice.

– CAJ News

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