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Last Updated: Thursday, 29 January, 2004, 18:21 GMT
Iranian held over Nigeria photos
Two people sit at the entrance of a burnt out police station
The Nigerian 'Taleban' is said to have torched police stations
An Iranian has been arrested by Nigerian police for taking photographs of what they say are strategic buildings in the capital, Abuja.

The man is alleged to have taken pictures of sites such as the Supreme Court and the Nigerian National Petroleum Tower.

Nigeria has strict rules on photography and the police are sensitive about public buildings being photographed.

There has been no comment on the arrest from the Iranian embassy.

Investigations going on

National police spokesman, Chris Olakpe, said the man was arrested last week on suspicion of spying on the nation.

Investigations are going on and the government will continue to ensure that we are not drawn into unnecessary chaos of any kind
Remi Oyo,
Presidential spokeswoman
Presidential spokeswoman Remi Oyo said: "In his camera he had about 15 shots of important buildings including the Ecowas secretariat and some buildings of foreign countries."

Both said the man was being interrogated.

The Nigerian security agencies are trying to establish whether there is a link between the Iranian and militant Islamic groups or "Talebans" in Yobe and Borno states, northeast of the country.

Ms Oyo said: "Investigations are going on and the government will continue to ensure that we are not drawn into unnecessary chaos of any kind."




SEE ALSO:
New 'Taleban' clashes in Nigeria
07 Jan 04  |  Africa
Analysis: Nigeria's Sharia split
07 Jan 03  |  Africa


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