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Unrest continues in Nigeria

Unrest continues in Nigeria
Cars drive through the Lekki toll gate, a site where soldiers had opened fire on protesters late on Tuesday, in Lagos, Nigeria. (Reuters)

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ABUJA/LAGOS – Nigeria’s police chief ordered the immediate mobilisation of all force resources on Saturday to try to control the worst street violence in two decades stemming from protests against police brutality.

The unrest, unprecedented since the 1999 return to civilian rule, is the most serious political crisis confronting President Muhammadu Buhari, a former military ruler elected in 2015.

Violence, particularly in the commercial capital Lagos, escalated after demonstrators were shot on Tuesday night in the city’s Lekki district during a round-the-clock curfew.

Witnesses blamed soldiers.

Rights group Amnesty International said soldiers and police had killed at least 12 protesters in two districts, though the army and police denied any involvement.

Several states, mostly in southern Nigeria, have imposed curfews after two weeks of confrontations between protesters and members of the security services.

As pockets of unrest flared again on Saturday in parts of the country, a spokesman for southern Cross River state said several buildings had been vandalised over the last two days including a shopping mall, a bank and electoral offices.

A round-the-clock curfew was reimposed on parts of the central city of Jos, just a day after it was relaxed on Friday, following the looting of emergency food supplies stored there by the disasters ministry, authorities said. (Reuters)