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Published On: Fri, Sep 15th, 2017

De-escalate tension now in South East, UPP tells FG

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By Uju Maduakor

The United Progressive Party (UPP) has urged the federal government to initiate measures to de-escalate tension in the South East region, even as it lamented the alleged military onslaught against people in the region.
A statement issued by the party’s publicity Secretary, ike Ogbuehi, UPP said the pictures and videos of unarmed young men in Abia State beaten and forced by soldiers at checkpoint to jump inside deep mud are despicable and detestable
While describing the actions of the soldiers are barbaric, obnoxious and sadism of the worst order, the party said it is appalled that the Nigerian Army could throw decency, professionalism and patriotism to the mud in carrying out its controversial Operation Python Dance II in the South East geopolitical zone.
“The invasion of Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) Secretariat in Umuahia, Abia State, the siege of the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu’s home, intimidation and torture of Ndigbo in their homeland are classical example of state terrorism.
“The party demands a stop of this show of shame that has brought the country to global ridicule and disrepute. The party condemns in strong terms this unprovoked militarization of South East as there is no emergency in the region to warrant such massive military deployment”, it said.
“Peaceful agitations by interest groups and ethnic nationalities are allowed in all democracies as clearly provided for in the Charter of the United Nations, the African Union and the Nigerian Constitution. It is democracy in action. To deploy the nation’s military armament to crackdown on unarmed agitators for self-determination through a national referendum, is justice juxtaposed and abuse of international military-civilian rule of engagement.
The party therefore called on the National Assembly and National Human Rights Commission to set up a high-powered investigation on the human rights abuses by the soldiers in the Operation Python Dance II in the South East.
It added that the Nigerian Army should note that the whole world is watching this state terrorism against unarmed civilians in the South East.

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