Iranian students, clergies ask for UN move to Free Sheikh Zakzaky
Iranian university and seminary schools students held rallies in front of the UN office in Tehran to demand the world body to initiate efforts to release top Muslim cleric Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky who has been kept in prison by the Nigerian government for the past four years.
The students carried placards which called on the international human rights bodies to pursue the health conditions of Sheikh Zakzaky and make a move to set him free.
Some of the placards blasted the UN silence on Sheikh Zakzaky’s imprisonment and underlined support for the Nigerian leader.
The demonstrators also issued a statement, urging freedom of Sheikh Zakzaky.
“After four years of brutal and unreasonable killing of Nigerian people by that country’s government and detention and torture of Shiites, we are unfortunately still witnessing the silence of the international bodies on the flagrant violation of human rights to such an extent that a human being is only inches away from martyrdom while being kept in the worst physical and spiritual conditions,” the statement said.
It called for the freedom of Sheikh Zakzaky and his access to the basic rights of all human beings, including the right to have an independent lawyer and access to medical treatment.
Sheikh Zakzaky, who is in his mid-sixties, lost his eyesight in one eye in a 2015 raid by security forces, that left more than 300 of his followers and three of his sons dead. His wife also sustained serious wounds.
He has been kept in custody along his wife and a large number of his followers ever since.
Back in 2016, Nigeria’s federal high court ordered his unconditional release from jail following a trial, but the government has so far refused to set him free.
The medical team responsible to treat Sheikh Zakzaky warned of his poor health conditions due to damage to his liver.
The leader of Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), who has been held in detention since December 2015 following a deadly raid by the Nigerian army troops on his residence in the country’s Northern Kaduna State is unwell, the medical team warned last month.
“Lead and cadmium levels are high in his blood which is fatal,” the doctors said, adding “His liver is also damaged.”