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Mental Health

Reports Find Nigerian Shi’a Cleric Sheikh Zakzaky Poisoned in Captivity

Nigerian Shi’a cleric and human rights activist Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky and his wife Zeenah El-Zakaky have been detained by the Nigerian authorities since 2015 following a deadly crackdown on their house by the Nigerian army in the same year in which three of their sons were murdered and thousands of his followers were subjected to live fire.

In 2016, a court order ruled against the impisonment of El-Zakzaky stating that the detention of the popular Shia cleric was ‘illegal’. Despite this, he wasn’t released and the crackdown on his protesting followers was only increased. He has been subjected to severe official torture, violating key international laws on human rights. A recent health examination that was allowed to be conducted after several protests and international pressure found alarming levels of metal poisoning in his body. Whether the poison was administered by the Nigerian officials themselves is not confirmed yet, but it is clear that whatever happened was within the four corners of the prison cell as he has been in prison for three consecutive years.

The doctors who conducted the examinations were later interviewed by the

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Huda Z
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Huda is an avid reader, writer and illustrator. She writes about politics, books, Muslim women and shares most of her work on her Instagram.

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