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Tension in eastern Nigeria as Biafran protest enters second day

Posted by AFP on 2005/12/06 | Views: 988 |

Tension in eastern Nigeria as Biafran protest enters second day


Separatist radicals faced off against heavily-armed Nigerian police in eastern cities as a protest to demand an independent homeland for the 40-million-strong Igbo people entered its second day.

ONITSHA, Nigeria (AFP) - Separatist radicals faced off against heavily-armed Nigerian police in eastern cities as a protest to demand an independent homeland for the 40-million-strong Igbo people entered its second day.


Separatist radicals faced off against heavily-armed Nigerian police in eastern cities as a protest to demand an independent homeland for the 40-million-strong Igbo people entered its second day.
Southeastern Nigeria ground to a halt on Monday as millions of Igbos obeyed a call from separatist leaders to hold a two-day stay-at-home protest over the arrest of Ralph Uwazurike, leader of the banned Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB).


Truckloads of riot police deployed in the early hours to Onitsha market, reputedly the biggest trading centre in west Africa, while young MASSOB supporters mounted burning barricades nearby.


"We are waiting for the police. We are not afraid of their bullets. A man of valour does not die twice. They have to release Chief Uwazurike or else Nigeria will burn," one of the militants, who gave his name as Nicholas, told AFP.


A spokesman for the protesters, Uchenna Madu, said Monday that police had shot three people dead during the first day of the protest; an activist and two schoolchildren.


Police firmly denied this, but vowed to "crush" what they regard as an illegal protest by a treasonous group.


The second day of action was timed to coincide with Uwazurike's next appearance in court in Abuja, where he and several comrades have been charged with treason and plotting to overthrow the government of President Olusegun Obasanjo. The case was expected to come up later Tuesday.


 

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Comments (3)

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Abieyuwa(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Otasowie means evening life is better than morning life. There is an error in your “evening life is better than evening life”?

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Naija g(Houston, Minnesota, US)says...

Sokari doesn’t mean joy. Joy is Biobela. Go to the village and ask the meaning of the name.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.