“We should pray with optimism and hope for people of Kashmir that are now under oppression, for Shias in Nigeria that empty human rights have done nothing for them, for Shias in Bahrain who are not granted the right to decide on their fate, and for Shias in Saudi Arabia,” he said during Friday prayers in Tehran.
Since India’s decision to cancel Kashmir’s partial autonomous status, the situation in Kashmir has remained tense. Thousands of people have been detained. Scores of protests have taken place in the region, but they have gone unreported due to communications blockade. The global community has criticized India for its behavior in Kashmir, but has failed to convince New Delhi to restore peace in the Himalayan region.
Hundreds of kilometers away in Nigeria, Shia Muslims are being continuously cracked down by Nigerian government. In the latest act of aggression some two weeks ago Nigerian security forces deployed live ammunition and tear gas against Muslim mourners marking the anniversary of the martyrdom of the third Shia Imam, Imam Hussein (PBUH), across the African country. The government-sanctioned violence killed at least 12 people and wounded many others.