Wednesday, November 6, 2013

DIPLOMATIC SCANDAL: Killer Of Nigerian National Arrested In India, As Two Countries Struggle To Settle Conflict

PHOTO - DIPLOMATIC SCANDAL: Killer Of Nigerian National Arrested In India, As Two Countries Struggle To Settle Conflict
Nigerians protest in Goa after the killing of Nigerian national last week
India - A 24-year-old man was arrested by Indian police in connection with the killing of a Nigerian national in the western state of Goa last week.
The man, identified as Suren Paul, a resident of Goa, has links with the drug mafia. Paul is suspected to be one of the six attackers involved in killing Obina Simione on Oct 31, 2013.
Local media reports said the Nigerian was hacked to death by a group of Goan drug traffickers, while five other Nigerians suffered stab wounds.

53 Nigerians were apprehended last week after around 200 of them staged a protest against the killing, chasing a police hearse carrying the corpse of the dead Nigerian and putting the body on the road. The demonstration blocked Goa's main highway for several hours
Subsequently, the police launched a crackdown on those staying illegally in the tourist state. It was announced on Monday that the Indian government will deport the Nigerians involved in minor crimes.
Interestingly, Nigerian High Commissioner to India has denied any knowledge of the fact of the arrest.
Looming conflict?
Reacting to the development, Nigerian officials yesterday issued a diplomatic note demanding to ensure safety of the country's nationals.
Speaking to international journalists, Nigeria's High Commissioner to India said the Nigerian community "feels aggrieved and offended for being targeted after the murder of a Nigerian in the Indian state of Goa."
In a statement to the Press Trust of India, the spokesman for the Commission, Tokunbo Falohun, lamented the loss of Nigeria's national in a 'cold-blooded murder'.
The Nigerian High Commission also urged to immediately arrest the culprits and make them compensate the relatives of the victim.
Falohun also noted that in Nigeria, there is a large number of Indians working, carrying out religious and other activities freely. Nigeria expects same conditions to be granted to Nigerians living in India, he said.
It is worthy noting that the before the official statement, consular attache Jacob Nwadadia warned of retaliation against Indians living in Nigeria if Goa did not stop "evicting Nigerians" from the state and failed to arrest the killers.
"There are only 50,000 Nigerians living in India, but there are over 1 million Indians living in Nigeria," he said. "Thousands of Indians living there will be thrown out on the streets if forcible eviction of Nigerians in Goa does not stop."
There would be no "repercussions" from the incident, Falohun maintained, if Indian authorities "justifiably" deal with thte consequences.
After the protest staged by angered Nigerian nationals, an Indian minister stirred a great deal of controversy by comparing Nigerians to "cancer": "The Nigerians are like cancer. We are worried what would be the image of Goa for the outside world when the images of Nigerians creating ruckus on the road are showed through television to the world," State Art and Culture Minister Dayanand Mandrekar, said.
However, India's foreign ministry spokesman Syed Akbaruddin said in New Delhi, the country's capital, that the row could be settled "amicably". The investigation into the murder is in progress, he assured.

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