Pipeline attacked by Nigerian militants

Dec. 19, 2009 at 2:26 PM

PORT HARCOURT, Nigeria, Dec. 19 (UPI) -- The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta said Saturday its members attacked an oil pipeline in southern Nigeria.

The militant group confirmed 35 militant fighters attacked a Shell/Chevron crude oil pipeline Saturday in Nigeria's Rivers State, the Times of Nigeria reported.

The militant group said in a released statement the attack was a response to delays by the government regarding talks with MEND officials. The group said the government was delaying those talks on the basis of President Umaru Yar'Adua's failing health.

"While wishing the president a speedy recovery, a situation where the future of the Niger Delta is tied to the health and well being of one man is unacceptable," MEND representative Jomo Gbomo said in the statement.

CNN reported the group, which ended its ceasefire with the government with Saturday's attack, also confirmed its dedication to stopping the exploitation of oil and gas supplies in Nigeria.

"MEND is committed to continue its fight for the restoration of the land and rights of the people of the Niger Delta which has been stolen for 50 years," Gbomo said.

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