Lagos - The Human Rights Writers Association
of Nigeria (HURIWA) has hinted at approaching the International Criminal Court
amid fears of the armed forces violating the rights of pro-Biafra protesters.
The organisation said it was constrained by the
circumstances of the emerging threats by the Nigerian military authority to use
firearms to quell the protests.
It urged President Muhammadu Buhari to call the military
high command to order to withdraw the threats and to desist from using violence
to stop citizens from protesting.
The protests, said HURIWA, were a fundamental human right
to freedom of peaceful assembly and free speech.
"By this appeal we are also sounding a note of warning to the Nigerian military," HURIWA
Also Read: Congo militia leader to go free
"We are building up evidence of war crime for
transmission to the International Criminal Court in The Hague Netherlands for
prosecution over crimes against humanity should peaceful pro Biafra agitators
be shot at by military and or police operatives."
HURIWA said the military involvement in internal security
operations (ISOP) was inevitable as the need for higher level of aggression
continually revealed itself.
However, HURIWA said constitutionally, the armed forces
had no right to deploy the use of firearms to disperse maim, or kill unarmed
and non-violent demonstrators.
"The recent occurrence of terrorism witnessed in the
country has further justified the need for military participation in ISOPs but
nothing in the law books criminalises peaceful protests," said HURIWA.
The sentiments come in the wake of protests
advocating for the independence of Biafra.
- CAJ News