Nigeria authorities use tear gas at protest

2012-01-16 14:05

Lagos - Nigerian security forces fired tear gas and shot into the air Monday to disperse around 300 protesters in Lagos as authorities moved to prevent demonstrations in various parts of the country.

An AFP correspondent said soldiers first shot into the air to disperse the protesters before police fired tear gas, forcing them to flee. It did not appear that anyone was wounded at the protest over fuel prices.

The protesters had gathered on a major road in Lagos, the largest city in Africa's most populous nation and biggest oil producer.

Soldiers also sought to disperse other crowds earlier in the day by driving toward them in armoured vehicles, though no one was believed to have been hit.

Troops also occupied protest sites where demonstrators had been gathering daily since a nationwide strike began on January 9.

The deployments came after President Goodluck Jonathan watered down a hike in petrol prices in a bid to end the strike that has entered its second week.