The Iranian government has applauded the approval and eventual departure of Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, leader of the proscribed Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), to India for medical treatment.
The Iranian government gave the commendation in a statement issued by Seyed Abbas Moussavi, its Foreign Ministry spokesperson, on Tuesday.
Moussavi also noted that the Iranian government hopes El-Zakzaky’s medical trip to India would provide an avenue for its Nigerian counterpart to resolve all its grievances with the IMN.
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The statement also requested that the Nigerian government should guarantee the rights of members of the Shi’ite Islamic sect in the country.
The statement read: “We hope that presence of Mr. Zakzaky outside the country will provide a better opportunity for resolving the problems of the last few years between the Islamic Movement of Nigeria and the government to guarantee the Shi’ites’ rights, removing the restrictions on the IMN and freedom of the prisoners.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran supports this process and declares its readiness for any assistance,” he added.
The government also wished El-Zakzaky a full and speedy recovery.
El-Zakzaky and his wife, Zeenat, arrived in the Indian city of New Delhi on Tuesday afternoon (Tuesday morning Nigerian time) to seek medical treatment.
The IMN leader and his wife travelled out of the country after Justice Darius Khobo of the Kaduna State High Court granted their application as filed by their counsel, Femi Falana, to seek medical treatment in India.
Over 180 doctors from seven countries, including Iran, had written to President Muhammadu Buhari, requesting that El-Zakzaky and his wife be allowed to seek medical attention outside Nigeria as the country lacked the requisite facilities to treat their ailment.
Iran is a dominantly Shia Islamic country.