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New Niger Delta Attack Claims Two Lives

Niger Delta Militants

A group of unidentified Nigerian militants attacked a boat transporting Eni oilfield workers in the Nembe area of the Niger Delta on Sunday, a spokesperson for Eni said. The attack reportedly left two people dead.

The workers were traveling to a well for a “routine operation.” Three members of the group escaped to a flow station. The bodies of the other two workers were found two days later. The attack occurred on June 29, and no group claimed responsibility. The Eni spokesperson said that investigations with local “Security Agencies” are continuing.

There have been some reports in Nigerian media that the attack was staged by the Niger Delta Avengers. However, the Avengers are known for attacking wells, pipelines and facilities, but not for killing people. The group has claimed responsibility for attacks in the past through its webpage and through Twitter.

The NDA’s Twitter account was disabled Monday after the group claimed responsibility for five attacks on facilities owned by Chevron, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC), and the Nigerian Production Development Company (NPDC), from Friday to Sunday. The NDA blew up two manifolds belonging to the NPDC in the Batan Community in the Warri South West Council Area of Delta State on Monday night. The Avengers also launched attacks on trunk lines that are operated by the NNPC. The NDA also targeted Chevron’s “well 10” at the Makaraba village of Gbaramatu Kingdom. Related: Big Oil Could Spark A Renaissance In U.S. Shale

2016 has seen an increase in attacks on oil facilities in the Niger Delta. Some have attributed the attacks to a combination of heightened tension in the political arena and low prices. Bergen Risk Solutions, a Norwegian risk analysis firm states that there have been 65 incidents in the region this year. In 2015, the firm says, the attacks totaled 42.

The upswing in the attacks cut the crude oil output of Nigeria to a near thirty-year low earlier this year.

By Lincoln Brown for Oilprice.com

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