RELIGION

Protesters demand release of detained Nigerian Shiite leader

Nigeria Shiite Muslims take to the street to protest and demanded the release of Shiite leader Ibraheem Zakzaky in Cikatsere, Nigeria, Friday, April 1, 2016. Hundreds of Shiites were reportedly killed in an army raid in Nigeria last year.(AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)

Nigeria Shiite Muslims take to the street to protest and demanded the release of Shiite leader Ibraheem Zakzaky in Cikatsere, Nigeria, Friday, April 1, 2016. Hundreds of Shiites were reportedly killed in an army raid in Nigeria last year.(AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)  (The Associated Press)

Dozens of protesters are demanding that Nigerian officials release Shiite leader Ibraheem Zakzaky.

Zakzaky was detained Dec. 14 along with scores of others after military raids in the northern city of Zaria allegedly killed hundreds of his followers and two of his sons. He has not been brought to court, which the law says must be within 48 hours of arrest.

Zakzaky's Islamic Movement in Nigeria denies that its members kidnapped and killed a Nigerian army colonel last week, or that they attempted to assassinate military chief Gen. Tukur Buratai.

On Friday, protesters chanting "Free Zakzaky!" marched along the highway near Zaria — one of many such protests recently.

The minority Shiites have boycotted a commission of inquiry into the killings, demanding that lawyers be given access to Zakzaky.