Sunday 28th August, 2016
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BIAFRA: EU gives condition for support

BIAFRA: EU gives condition for support

·   We mobilised 5m protesters in 7 states for Monday rallies - IPOB
·   Accuses Govs Ikpeazu, Wike of betrayal
 
The ongoing pro-Bia­fra agitations by some groups have received the attention of the Europe­an Union (EU) which on Tuesday gave conditions before it could support the struggle for self-de­termination.
Through its High Representa­tive for Foreign Affairs and Secu­rity, Federica Mogherini, the EU said that it would not endorse any armed struggle for the actu­alisation of an independent Bia­fra State.
In a response to the request of the Biafra agitators through the Organisation of Emerging African States (OEAS) for a ref­erendum, which The AUTHOR­ITY accessed, the EU urged the Federal Government to respect
 
 the rights of the agitators.
The OEAS had asked the Eu­ropean Union’s High Representa­tive for Foreign Affairs and Secu­rity to help ensure a referendum for Biafra’s self-rule.
The organisation also de­manded the release of all Biafran political prisoners, a stand down of Nigerian forces, and a snap ref­erendum within 90 days.
But Mogherini, in a reply to OEAS Chief Administrative Offic­er, Dr. Jonathan Levy, explained that the EU’s official position is that while it has strong diplomat­ic and economic ties with Nigeria, “the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms re­mains a priority for the EU and we encourage the authorities (Ni­geria) in every occasion to respect such rights.”
The regional bloc told the OEAS and Biafra agitators that self-determination and border changes must be in accordance with established international laws.
The OEAS had called for an internationally recognised refer­endum on Biafra independence, stressing that it will only recognise a Biafra that emerges via interna­tional law and not armed struggle or secession.
To achieve the referendum, the OEAS canvassed non-violent means such as “general strikes, economic boycotts, demonstra­tions, lawsuits, and civil disobe­dience.”
Meanwhile, the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) has said that it successfully mobilised five million members on Monday to protest the Federal Government’s continued detention of its leader, Dr Nnamdi Kanu, in seven states in the South East and South-South zones.
The group had staged protests in some states in the two regions where three people were report­edly killed and five others hit by stray bullets by soldiers deployed by the authorities to foil the dem­onstrations.
The IPOB criticised the Abia State Governor Okezie Ikpeazu and his Rivers State counterpart, Chief Nyesom Wike, for their alleged directive to the securi­ty agencies to prevent the group from carrying out its demonstra­tions.
In an interview with journal­ists in Nnewi, Anambra State, IPOB Media and Publicity Of­ficer, Mr. Emma Powerful, said: “In spite of the threat by the se­curity agencies and the unwant­ed governors’ comments against us, we had our protests in Delta, Abia and Enugu states. In Abia, Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Rivers and Bayelsa states, two million protesters came out. Enugu State was joined by Ebonyi State, while Anambra State joined with Del­ta State in Asaba, where we had over three million protesters. We will repeat same in other states very soon.”
Powerful said that he was not surprised by the comments of Wike and Ikpeazu because they belong to the People’s Democrat­ic Party (PDP) and were unpop­ular candidates imposed on their states and may be planning to de­fect to the All Progressives Con­gress (APC), hence their com­ments that will make them look sympathetic to the cause of the Federal Government.
He pointed out that the state governors in the South East and South-South and others who were elected by their people can­not make reckless comments be­cause they must seek clearance from their constituents before they speak against IPOB or any pro-Biafra group.
“We are therefore, telling those states, groups and individ­uals who do not know what to say or how to talk about IPOB or any Biafra agitating group to re­main silent or we will visit them with the wrath of Biafra,” Power­ful threatened.

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