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Brits arrested for Nigeria oil theft 'innocent'

Two British nationals arrested for an alleged plot to steal oil from a pipeline in Nigeria are "totally innocent" and should be released immediately, according to their employer. Maritime security company Port2Port West Africa said the charges against Vincent Haywood and Piers Eastwood were baseless and that it was working with the Nigerian authorities to secure their release. "The arrest of our personnel is completely unjustifiable," company chairman Edward Aina said in a statement seen by AFP on Saturday.

Nigeria arrests two Britons over 'oil theft plot'

Two British nationals were among 14 people arrested on suspicion of attempted bribery in connection with an alleged plot to steal oil from a pipeline, Nigeria said on Friday. The head of the Joint Task Force (JTF) of military and police in the oil-producing Niger Delta region said the Britons allegedly tried to bribe a senior commander to facilitate the theft. Oil theft, or "bunkering", is a major problem in Nigeria, which is Africa's leading crude producer and exporter.

Delta force for peace? US uses films as aid in Nigeria

A prominent director goes to Nigeria's troubled oil-producing region and recruits 21 youngsters with absolutely no film experience. He brings them to one of the country's most expensive hotels for a 10-day filmmaking crash-course then flies them back home to make movies about positive, non-violent change. Picking up the tab are US taxpayers -- red carpet premieres included. "This is pretty out there," the US Consul General in Nigeria's economic capital Lagos, Jeffrey Hawkins, said of a new TV programme which chronicles the search for new moviemakers.

Nigeria rebels in the oil-rich delta claim attack on boat, threaten to reduce oil production

LAGOS, Nigeria - Rebels are claiming responsibility for an attack on a security patrol boat on a waterway in Nigeria's southern Bayelsa state. A statement purporting to come from the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta said late Sunday the attack, though "insignificant," is a reminder of the rebel group's presence in the oil-rich delta. It said the Saturday night attacks in the Nembe-Bassanbiri waterways were carried out by new fighters. The group threatened to reduce Nigerian oil production to zero by 2015.

Amnesty International uses new evidence to accuse Shell Nigeria of false reports on oil spills

LAGOS, Nigeria - Amnesty International accuses Nigeria's biggest petroleum producer, Shell, of manipulating oil spill investigations and documents in cases where the rights group says the company has wrongly reported on the cause and volume of pollution devastating the Niger Delta and made false claims about cleanup measures.

Amnesty criticizes Shell's reporting of Nigerian oil spills

By Joe Brock ABUJA (Reuters) - Amnesty International called into question Royal Dutch Shell's accounting in Nigeria for oil spill amounts and causes, saying the oil major was seeking to avoid compensation payments and damage to its reputation. The Anglo-Dutch oil major responded in a statement that it "firmly rejects unsubstantiated assertions that they have exaggerated the impact of crude oil theft and sabotage to distract attention from operational performance".

Shell 'manipulates Nigeria oil spills probes'

Amnesty International alleged on Thursday that Shell has repeatedly misrepresented the cause of oil spills in Nigeria, blaming criminal sabotage to avoid liability, in a charge the Anglo-Dutch energy giant dismissed as "unsubstantiated". The number of spills in the southern Niger Delta region, home to Africa's largest oil industry, was "staggering", the London-based rights group said in a new report, "Bad Information. Oil Spill Investigations in the Niger Delta".

Shell to sell licences, pipelines in Nigeria

Anglo-Dutch oil giant Shell said on Monday that it intended to sell some assets in Nigeria after announcing a slump in global profits blamed on oil theft and sabotage. "Some licences are up for sale, this includes some pipelines. We have not confirmed the specific licences," Simon Henry, Shell's chief financial officer told AFP in an emailed statement. No further details were disclosed about the sale but Henry added: "There is a lot of interest from Nigerian indigenous companies.

Pirates kidnap two American sailors off Nigeria

Pirates have stormed an oil supply vessel off southern Nigeria and kidnapped two American crew members, Nigeria's navy and US defence officials said Thursday, the latest unrest in a region described as a piracy hotspot. A US-flagged C-Retriever owned by American oil servicing company Edison Chouest Offshore was attacked on Wednesday off the city of Brass, Nigeria's navy spokesman Kabir Aliyu told AFP.

Pirates kidnap two American sailors off Nigeria

Pirates have stormed an oil supply vessel off southern Nigeria and kidnapped two American crew members, Nigeria's navy and US defence officials said Thursday, the latest unrest in a region described as a piracy hotspot. A US-flagged C-Retriever owned by American oil servicing company Edison Chouest Offshore was attacked on Wednesday off the city of Brass, Nigeria's navy spokesman Kabir Aliyu told AFP.
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