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Militants Claim Responsibility for Another Attack in Nigeria

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By Staff WriterJun 16, 2016

Oil majors including Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) and Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) heaved a sigh of relief when militant group, Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) agreed to hold peace talks with the Nigerian government. However, the relief was short-lived when on Thursday the militant group claimed to have blown up another pipeline owned by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

The attack comes as a great setback for oil producers and the Nigerian government as the militant group had agreed to hold talks with them, provided certain conditions were met. The NDA tweeted from one of its unverified accounts:

“At 4:00am @NDAvengers blow up NNPC Pipeline in Oruk Anam Local Government Area in Akwa Ibom.”

On June 13, Africa’s second largest crude oil producer said that dialogues with the NDA had begun and had even started “to yield fruits.” Lately, however, the NDA had begun to identify the callous attitude of the Nigerian government, which had continued to invade communities and arrest militants despite agreement over a two-week ceasefire.

Last week, the group shunned talks contending that they needed a serious attitude and a conductive atmosphere to conduct any such dialogue. Following the assaults, the NDA warned oil companies not to conduct any repairs to the pipeline as well as the facilities previously attacked by the group, until the demands of the militant group were fully met.

Nigerian oil output has plunged to its lowest level in 27 years, thanks to the wave of violence witnessed recently, driving up oil prices owing to supply disruptions. According to Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, the state-owned company, the attacks have halted supply of 700,000–800,000 barrels of oil per day.

Oil giants including Eni SpA, Total SA (NYSE:TOT), Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM), Chevron, and Shell run joint ventures with Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation that extracts 80% of Nigeria’s oil.

Editing by Sofia Riaz; Graphics by Rameez Ahmed

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