Nigerian rebels claim attack on state-owned pipeline

(iStock)
(iStock)

Warri - Nigerian rebels claimed a Tuesday attack on a state-owned oil pipeline and accused the military of "endlessly harassing" the country's south as they vowed to intensify their campaign of sabotage.

The newly formed Niger Delta Greenland Justice Mandate (NDGJM) group said in a statement that they attacked a Nigerian Petroleum Development Company line in the southern oil-producing Delta State in the early hours of Tuesday.

"The NDGJM brought down the Ogor-Oteri major delivery line," said the militants. "Good job boys."

A Nigerian state security official confirmed the attack to AFP, saying: "I can't give you much detail on the incident as investigations into the incident are still ongoing."

The NDGJM militants said that they do not recognise the ceasefire declared in August by the Niger Delta Avengers, a rival armed group in the region, or its ongoing negotiations with the Nigerian government.

Endless harassment 

The group also criticised the Nigerian military for its operations in the Delta's restive swamplands.

"The NDGJM will no longer sit quietly watching the endless harassment of our peoples in various parts of the region by the Nigerian military," said the group.

"It shall from now on be an eye for an eye, for every military atrocity carried out in the creeks... the Nigerian armed forces will have the NDGJM to contend with."

Last week the Nigerian military launched 'Operation Crocodile Smile' in the oil-hub of Warri claiming to have killed five militants and arrested 23 others in a weekend raid.

An amnesty program introduced in 2009 brought peace to the Niger delta after years of attacks crippled crude output.

Yet when Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari indicated that he would wind down the costly program in an effort to trim government spending violence once again erupted in the region.

Groups including the Niger Delta Avengers and the NDGJM are demanding a greater share of oil revenues and political autonomy. Their attacks have hampered oil exports and damaged Nigeria's fragile economy.



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