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Iran media highlights ‘Islamic movement’ in Nigeria

Iran’s Tasnim news agency highlighted on Thursday that its support for Iran and Shia Islamic groups may be in Nigeria. The website published an interview Ibrahim Zakzaki gave on TV this week. Zakzaki is the leader of the “Islamic Movement” in Nigeria. According to reports, he was detained in Nigeria since 2015 but was released recently. Reuters describes him as the leader of a Banner Shia group. What is interesting here is that Iran’s Tasneem now wants to show its role, which appears to cover up the growing Iranian interests in spreading their influence in Africa.

What did the report say?

Zakzaki called the “Islamic Movement” “the voice of Iran’s Islamic Revolution in Nigeria” and he “emphasized that the movement is seeing growth and prosperity.” He said that “after the victory of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, we realized that the ideas of this revolution are similar to those of the students we have at the university.”

Nigeria has a large Islamic community, making up about half the country, and Nigeria has been plagued by extremists affiliated with Boko Haram over the past decade. However, the role of pro-Iranian or Shia groups is more complex as Boko Haram is apparently Sunni rooted. extremists and are associated with groups like ISIS, which are sectarian and against Shia.

In his discussion, Zakzaki states that he was once a student of economics and attended Islamic meetings, and that he promoted the teachings of Islam. “When we were in university, we had Islamic activities. I was in prison for nine years, seven of which were in the 1980s. They were harassed and harassed.” He claims that his house was raided and that the officers had killed children in the past. “My wife was injured in that attack and the bullet has not left her body yet. She also got a bullet in my body and I am suffering from low vision….we are still under the watch of the authorities and We are not allowed to talk about attacks on us.”

Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau speaks in front of guards at an undisclosed location in Nigeria in this still image from an undated video obtained on January 15, 2018.  (Credit: Boko Haram Handout / Sahara Reporters Via Reuters)Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau speaks in front of guards at an undisclosed location in Nigeria in this still image from an undated video obtained on January 15, 2018. (Credit: Boko Haram Handout / Sahara Reporters Via Reuters)

He says injuries sustained in previous raids by security forces now require foreign treatment. “After we got out of jail, we asked for a passport.” He describes the “message of Imam Hussein” in his discussion and that he sees the Shia celebrations of Ashura and Arbin. “Blood is victorious over the sword,” he said.

He also discussed what he claimed were attacks on Shias in Nigeria. “What happened in Abuja was an attack by the country’s authorities on a symbolic march to the resurrection of Imam Hussein … We will announce the exact figures soon. Of course, some of those killed were not present at the march, but passersby Were .” The incident refers to the recent killing of Shias in the capital of Abuja. Shias are frequently targeted by extremists in Pakistan, Afghanistan and elsewhere. Nigerian authorities claim that the police were not involved in the attacks in Abuja and that it was in fact the police cracking down on a banned Shia Muslim group, in which 57 people were arrested.

Sheikh said it was important for his followers to be on the “path of jihad”, although it was not clear what he meant by this. He compared his struggle to that of South African civil rights leader Nelson Mandela.

The interesting thing here is that Iran’s media is taking more interest in Shias Nigeria And it may be part of a process to gain more recognition for groups inspired by Iran’s 1979 revolution. Groups like Hezbollah are already active in West Africa.

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