Abuja — AT least 11 protesters and a senior police official have been killed during demonstrations by Muslim faithfuls in Nigeria.
Some 54 suspects were arrested following the protests in the capital Abuja on Monday.
Protesters allegedly shot dead Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of operations of the Federal Capital Territory Command (FCT), Usman Umar.
Two assistant superintendents and a journalist sustained gunshot wounds, police said.
"The heavily armed protesters defying all sense of decency violently attacked innocent citizens and police personnel on duty," said Frank Mba, national police spokesman.
The Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) led the protests against the continued detention of its leader, Ibrahim El-Zakzaky.
He has been in detention since 2015 in spite of court orders to release him.
IMN meanwhile disputed the version of police over the protests in Abuja.
Ibrahim Musa, the organisation's spokesman, refuted that protesters shot at police and civilians
"We strongly dispute the claim by the police that the protesters shot at them because throughout our processions we have not been carrying any arms right from 2015 to date," Musa stated.
He said at least 30 IMN members were injured.
"We are aware of the fact that the security agents have been going around taking off those they killed from the streets," Musa alleged.