(Adds CNN’s comment, UK parliament to debate on sanction)By Felix OnuahABUJA, Nov 19 (Reuters) – Nigeria should sanction CNN for areport that the country’s military shot and killed protestersdemonstrating against police brutality, a minister said onThursday, but the U.S. channel defended its reporting.The U.S. broadcaster used “unverified and possibly doctoredvideos” and “information from questionable sources” in thereport, information minister Lai Mohammed told a news conferencein Abuja.When asked, Mohammed did not specify how the governmentmight sanction CNN. He said he believes the broadcaster hasinternal systems for dealing with erring staff, and thatNigerian authorities would also do what was necessary.A CNN spokesperson said “Our reporting was carefully andmeticulously researched, and we stand by it.”Thousands of Nigerians took to the streets to protestagainst the police Special Anti-Robbery Squad, which thedemonstrators blame for killings, torture and extortion.Though the protests were initially peaceful, demonstratorsin an upmarket Lagos district were shot at on Oct. 20 by menwitnesses said were soldiers. Rights group Amnesty internationalsaid 12 protesters were killed. The army denied involvement.The British parliament will on Monday debate imposingsanctions “on members of the Nigerian government and policeforce involved in any human rights abuses by the Nigerianpolice,” after a public petition gathered enough signatures forlawmakers to debate the move.In response to the petition, the British government said:”We were concerned by violence during recent protests and awaitthe outcome of Nigerian investigations into reports of policebrutality. We do not publicly speculate on future sanctionsdesignations.” Nigeria fined three television stations over their reportingof the protests, Mohammed said, adding that the governmentwanted to check a trend in which media houses use materialsobtained on social media without verification.He said the government had no plans to shut down socialmedia but he was advocating regulation of its use.
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