Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) Peaceful Protest

Rights group Amnesty International is calling on the governor of Anambra state, south-eastern Nigeria, to investigate alleged killings of pro-Biafra secessionists. The pro-Biafra movement calls for the independence of territories forcibly annexed to modern-day Nigeria during British colonization, which ended in 1960.

Last year, Amnesty released a report documenting alleged abuses against supporters of the Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob) movement.

The group claimed Nigeria security forces killed at least 150 people "and injured hundreds more during peaceful assemblies" since August 2015.

"On 30 May 2016, during the Biafra Remembrance Day, thousands of activists gathered for a rally in Onitsha, Anambra state, south east Nigeria. 60 IPOB were killed by security forces that day," Amnesty said.

At the time, an IPOB coordinator who witnessed some of the violence on demonstrators told IBTimes UK, Nigerian security forces used tear gas and fired live bullets to intimidate and kill people, who ran away.

The army denied the allegations, claiming it intervened to prevent "ethnic clashes" and accused Amnesty of trying to tarnish its image.

But Amnesty has now created a petition urging Anambra's governor, Willie Obiano, "to instruct a prompt, independent and impartial inquiry into the killings of Biafra activists and other serious human rights violations, committed by the security forces."

Obiano's spokesperson has not responded to a request for comments.

A Biafran Republic was established in 1967 but re-annexed to Nigeria in 1970, following a bloody genocidal war that claimed millions of Biafran lives.

Independence calls have gained renewed momentum following the arrest of Nnamdi Kanu, one of the leaders of the movement, in October 2015. Kanu, IPOB leader and director of UK-based Radio Biafra, is standing trial on treasonable felony charges for speaking out for the freedom of Biafrans.




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