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The Niger Delta Avengers (NDA), the group behind the string of attacks that have halted major operations in the oil-rich Niger Delta, have issued a threat to all oil companies in the region to shut down and leave or face stepped up attacks.
The ultimatum was issued on Thursday, and signed by spokesman Mudoch Agbinibo.
“The Niger Delta Avengers is giving two weeks [sic] ultimatum to all oil companies in our region to shut down and evacuates their staff,” the statement, carried by Nigerian media, allegedly read.
The group said that failure to comply would result in bloody attacks that the Nigerian military would be incapable of stopping.
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According to Nigerian media, NDA sent the statement by email, specifically warning: “If at the end of the ultimatum and you’re still operating. We will blow up all the locations. It will be bloody. So, just shut down your operations and leave.”
The group also specifically noted oil blocs that are allegedly owned by former Nigerian vice-president Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, Defense Minister General Theopilus Danjum, for petroleum minister Alhaji Riwalnu Lukman and others.
The group is taking issue with the fact that most of the oil wells in the area are owned by figures outside the Niger Delta, indicating that locally owned or locally connected ownerships will be spared attack.
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In the fallout from the latest series of attacks, Royal Dutch Shell has been forced to evacuate staff from its Eja OML 79 production facility.
On Monday, Nigerian officials said that Chevron had begun to evacuate staff from its facilities in the Niger Delta follow attacks on its assets. Several Chevron facilities, such as a platform and oil flow station, were attacked by militants last week.
On Thursday, militants vowed to attack Chevron again as the company attempts to repair damage.
“We made it clear that no repair works should be done until our demands are fully met,” the NDA spokesman was quoted as saying.
By Charles Kennedy of Oilprice.com
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Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com