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Nigeria's Oil Pipeline Sabotaged   
 
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01-Feb-2010  
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Royal Dutch Shell has shut three oil flow stations in Nigeria's Niger Delta region after a pipeline was sabotaged, a company spokeswoman has said.

She said Saturday's leak on the Trans Ramos oil pipeline was confirmed "to have been caused by sabotage". The leak was later stopped.
No group has so far claimed responsibility for the attack. It came shortly after Nigeria's militant group Mend said it was ending the truce it declared last October.

However, Mend (Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta) said it was not directly responsible for the attack, reports the Reuters news agency. A Mend spokesman said the group did not believe the government would restore control of resources to local people.

Mend has demanded that local residents be given a greater share in profits from the oil produced by the region. Mend warned oil companies to prepare for an "all-out onslaught" against installations and personnel.

Analysts later said it was not immediately clear if this statement came from the whole of Mend - the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta - or just a faction that did not accept the offer of an amnesty from Nigerian President Umaru Yar'Adua.

Militants have carried out a series of attacks which have cost Nigeria millions in lost revenue over the years. The attacks have meant that facilities in the area have been unable to work beyond two-thirds capacity, costing an estimated $1bn a month in lost revenue. But much of the violence in the region has been carried out by criminal gangs.
 
 
 
 

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