Monday, August 22, 2005

Nigeria leader admits abuse, group says

Human Rights Watch urges follow-up action on police violations
LAGOS, Nigeria: An international human rights group said Monday that Nigeria's president had acknowledged Nigerian police often torture and kill criminal suspects and urged him to end such abuses.
President Olusegun Obasanjo made the surprising departure from usual official denials in a message to a police human rights forum in Nigeria last week in which he confirmed abuses, some of which were detailed in a report last month by New York-based Human Rights Watch."Obasanjo's recognition of human rights abuses by the police is an important first step," Peter Takirambudde, executive director of the African Division at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement."However addressing the problems of the police requires more than just lip service. It is essential that his words are followed by concrete steps to end police abuses," Takirambudde said.


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