You may have seen #endSARS across social media from celebrities, influencers, politicians, and more. It is a call against police brutality in Lagos, Nigeria.
CNN reports soldiers in Nigeria opened fire on protesters, turning the situation violent and bloody. Protests have occurred across Nigeria for two weeks after claims of kidnapping, harassment, and extortion by The Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).
A protest witness, Akinbosola Ogunsanya, stated shooting began as lights went out in the city during a 24-hour curfew. “Members of the Nigerian army pulled up on us and they started firing,” he said. “They were shooting, they were firing straight, directly at us, and a lot of people got hit. I just survived, barely.”
While in Nigeria, the news spread to America and has elicited a statement by Vice President Joe Biden:
I urge President Buhari and the Nigerian military to cease the violent crackdown on protesters in Nigeria, which has already resulted in several deaths. My heart goes out to all those who have lost a loved one in the violence. The United States must stand with Nigerians who are peacefully demonstrating for police reform and seeking an end to corruption in their democracy. I encourage the government to engage in a good-faith dialogue with civil society to address these long-standing grievances and work together for a more just and inclusive Nigeria.
Updates on the situation in Nigeria can be read here.