Beyonce is the latest A-list star to add her voice to the #EndSARS movement amid widespread protests in Nigeria.
The movement calls for an end to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), a controversial unit of the Nigerian police force, which human rights groups have blamed for widespread abuses, including torture and killings.
This was contained in a statement issued by Beyonce via the Twitter feed of her charitable foundation BeyGood, said: “I am heartbroken to see the senseless brutality taking place in Nigeria. There has be to be an end to SARS.
“We have been working on partnerships with youth organisations to support those protesting for change. We are collaborating with coalitions to provide emergency healthcare, food, and shelter.
“To our Nigerian sisters and brothers, we stand with you.”
The protests began two weeks ago after a video circulated showing a man being beaten, apparently by police officers from the squad.
Protests have been taking place across Nigeria, including in major cities Lagos, Abuja, and also Ibadan.
The unit was disbanded on October 11 but the protests have continued and at least two people were shot on Tuesday.
However, local media reports say that up to 12 people have been killed; as well as others wounded after soldiers opened fire during protests. Amnesty International has said it had obtained credible reports of deaths.
The shootings are said to have taken place after a small group of protesters in Lagos defied a 24-hour curfew that has been put in place in response to the protests.
Beyonce’s response comes days after Nigerian singer Tiwa Savage, who worked with Beyonce on her visual album Black Is King; called on her and also her team to use their voices; as well as platforms to raise awareness about the situation in the country.
She said: “We need support, it’s gone on for years, we need support.
“I want to use my platform right now to call Beyonce and the whole team that reached out to a lot of Nigerians; Nigerian artists; producers; video directors; also dancers; as well as creatives.
“I want them to please use their voice as well as their platform right now; because this same country that birthed this genre is on fire right now. It is on fire.
“I’m calling on Beyonce and the whole team and I am telling you you can’t ignore this; you cannot be quiet.”
The campaign has attracted responses from other musicians; including Barbadian singer Rihanna and American rapper Nicki Minaj.