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Posts Tagged ‘Esther Kiobel’

Kiobel Writ Extract: Nigeria in the 1990s: The Nigerian Junta

…Shell continued to collaborate closely with the regime during Abacha’s period of government and it regularly offered the regime a helping hand. Shell was prepared for instance to procure weapons, to maintain a network of informants and to make its means of transport available for military operations.

By John Donovan

The numbered paragraphs below are extracted from the English translation of a 138 page Writ of Summons served on Royal Dutch Shell companies on 28 June 2017 by Dutch Human Rights law firm Prakken d’Oliveira. They represent four widows including Esther Kiobel who hold Shell liable for the murder of their husbands, individual Ogoni leaders now known collectively as the ‘Ogoni Nine‘. The famed writer and community leader, Ken Saro-Wiwa was one of the group. For the purpose of this online publication, the footnotes are indicated in red text. read more

Esther Kiobel castigates UK and Dutch joint intervention in U.S. Supreme Court Case

Esther Kiobel of Kiobel-v-Shell fame speaking at an Amnesty International Event

By John Donovan

Amnesty International published an article in April 2014 revealing that the British government had intervened on the side of Royal Dutch Shell in the Kiobel-v-Shell case before the U.S. Supreme Court  and had done so after being lobbied by Shell. A related document obtained in response to a Freedom of Information request confirmed that the Dutch government joined Shell in the representations made to the U.S. Supreme Court. Seems safe to assume that Shell also made representations to the Dutch government.  read more

Did Vince Cable recuse himself from Kiobel v Shell controversy?

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Vince Cable Described As ‘Minister For Shell’ In Letter From Oil Giant

By John Donovan

Vince Cable, the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills was formerly a senior Royal Dutch Shell executive.

It has recently come to light that Shell successfully lobbied his department to intervene on Shell’s behalf in a case being heard by the US Supreme Court: Kiobel-v-Shell.

The UK Information Commissioners Office (ICO) has just released its decision in regard to a complaint:

Extract read more

Documents show UK Government caved in to Shell lobbying

Graphics from The Guardian article Unloveable Shell, the Goddess of Oil by Andrew Rowell, published 15th Nov 1997

“Are there any principles that the UK government is willing to stand up for in the face of business lobbying? Apparently not, if documents released through a Freedom of Information request are anything to go by. These show, in detail, how the UK intervened to support Shell and Rio Tinto in high-profile US human rights court cases, following requests from the companies. The Kiobel case was brought against the oil giant by communities from the Niger Delta, who accused Shell of helping the Nigerian military to systematically torture and kill environmentalists in the 1990s.” read more

UK Govt ‘Caved’ In Pushing US Supreme Court To Prioritize Corporations Over Human Rights

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Extracts from an article by Carey L. Biron published 21 April 2014 by MINTPRESS NEWS

“In the cases against Shell and Rio Tinto, business interests won over the human rights interests of the plaintiffs in the cases who had legitimate claims of torture and murder…”

WASHINGTON — Newly released internal memoranda and emails detail the process behind the British government’s intervention in a landmark ruling last year by the U.S. Supreme Court, which limited a pioneering law that had allowed the U.S. legal system to be used to prosecute overseas corporate human rights abuses. The documents — 63 pages of which were released through Freedom of Information Act requests and made public earlier this month following years of requests — come from 2011 and 2012. They focus on a U.S. Supreme Court case called Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co., the company known in the United States as Shell Oil. The case was brought by communities in the Niger Delta, who claim that Shell-hired security groups, including the Nigerian military, tortured and killed environmentalists opposing the company’s operations during the 1990s. read more

Documents reveal extent of Shell lobbying in human rights case

Screen Shot 2013-10-14 at 17.03.04The documents, obtained by the Corporate Responsibility Coalition (Core) and Amnesty International, show the closeness of the relationship between the multinational corporations and UK government departments. They also show that UK government officials were privately worried about being seen to be promoting business interests over ethical trading principles. Peter Frankental, economic relations programme director at Amnesty International UK, said: “In these David versus Goliath encounters, the UK has effectively shielded the interests of powerful companies at the expense of their alleged victims.”

Article by Owen Bowcott published Sunday 6 April 2014 by The Guardian under the headline: “Documents reveal extent of Shell and Rio Tinto lobbying in human rights case”

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Campaigners demonstrate in 2009 against Shell’s actions in the Ogoni region of Nigeria. Photograph: Bebeto Matthews/AP

The extent of lobbying conducted by Shell and Rio Tinto in seeking legal support from the UK government to dismiss allegations of human rights abuses has been revealed in internal memorandums released by the Foreign Office.

The documents, obtained by the Corporate Responsibility Coalition (Core) and Amnesty International, show the closeness of the relationship between the multinational corporations and UK government departments. They also show that UK government officials were privately worried about being seen to be promoting business interests over ethical trading principles. read more

Voser wisely abandons an unstable ship

I have bad news for Shell. A whistleblower who has major safety concerns with the Prelude flagship vessel destined for Australia, has supplied me with potentially explosive information. I am in possession of a considerable amount of internal information and photographic material. The person in question has been intimately involved in the project at a high level and is deeply concerned that warnings issued to Shell (and other parties) have been ignored and financial considerations are taking priority over safety issues. The whistleblower is very concerned about mismanagement and the alleged use of totally unqualified personnel.   

By John Donovan

Peter Voser could not wait to ease Jeroen van der Veer out of the top job at Royal Dutch Shell Plc.

He was full of enthusiasm and itching to implement his plans, which included making hundreds of Shell executives reapply for their own jobs.

Mr. Voser now has only days left as Chief Executive, with Ben van Beurden about to receive what he may view as a poisoned chalice.

Voser’s sudden decision to jump ship for a “lifestyle change”, announced several months ago, took many by surprise. read more

Has the US Supreme Court been subverted by Big Business?

Screen Shot 2013-06-22 at 10.39.42By John Donovan: After the recent historic U.S. Supreme Court precedent setting decision in favour of the evil oil giant Royal Dutch Shell Plc and big business in the Kiobel vs. Royal Dutch Shell case, there is further disturbing evidence this week that the court is siding with multinational corporations against ordinary people and small businesses. WHY? The following extraordinary article by the Editorial Board of The New York Times is published today on page 18 of the New York edition.

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Another Blow to Class Action

This week, the Supreme Court continued its aggressive effort to favor corporations by forcing customers to raise grievances through individual arbitration rather than a class action or some other joint legal challenge.

In American Express Company v. Italian Colors Restaurant, the court ruled 5 to 3 that a group of merchants could not bring a class action against the company even on antitrust grounds because each had signed a contract that required complaints to be taken to individual arbitration. read more

Email received from Esther Kiobel of Kiobel v Royal Dutch Shell

Screen Shot 2013-04-24 at 20.46.09There are also secret documents to prove how Shell tried to bribe my husband in an executive meeting at the government house in Port Harcourt, when they planned to arrest and kill Ken Saro-Wiwa. And when they did not succeed, they turned around to mastermind the killing of the Ogoni 4, in a bid to set confusion amongst the Ogoni people – a problem that has remained to date.

Unsolicited email received from Esther Kiobel of Kiobel v Royal Dutch Shell

Dear John,

Thank you for all that you are doing and contributing to the cause of the oppressed.

God bless you mightily and please keep up the good work.

The God of the widows and orphans will guide and lead/strengthening you to continue standing/fighting for the Oppressed.

Your readers may be interested in these extracts from an article about my court case against Royal Dutch Shell arising from Shell’s activities in Nigeria.

We are holding Shell responsible for the crimes committed against us and the rest of humanity. I was stripped naked, tortured, and locked up twice, while my husband and the rest of the Ogoni 9 were maimed, strangled, killed and acidized. I have proofs of those who were paid by Shell, and who were in their payroll to lie, testify, some of them sworn affidavit in court.  do have documents that implicate Shell. The documents were sent through my late husband’s office as Honorable Commissioner for Commerce and Tourism during the Komo administration as military governor of Rivers State. I do have pictures of Shell’s cronies airlifting my husband in their helicopter, dressed in uniform and helmet that bore Shell’s logo. There are also secret documents to prove how Shell tried to bribe my husband in an executive meeting at the government house in Port Harcourt, when they planned to arrest and kill Ken Saro-Wiwa. And when they did not succeed, they turned around to mastermind the killing of the Ogoni 4, in a bid to set confusion amongst the Ogoni people – a problem that has remained to date. read more

Esther Kiobel still intent on seeking justice

Screen Shot 2013-04-19 at 11.48.26After Esther Kiobel recently sought my advice, anticipating the possible decision that has just been announced, I put her into contact with a Dutch law firm with a view to instigating a lawsuit against Royal Dutch Shell in the Netherlands. Hopefully that process is now underway.

By John Donovan

Access is provided here to the 35 page judgement issued by the Supreme Court of the United States in the case KIOBEL, INDIVIDUALLY AND ON BEHALF OF HER LATE HUSBAND KIOBEL, ET AL v. ROYAL DUTCH PETROLEUM CO. ET AL: decided April 17, 2013

Esther Kiobel (right) is a regular visitor to this website and has made some very much appreciated comments about our activities.

Esther, who alleges that her husband Barinem Kiobel was executed by the Nigerian regime with the alleged backing of Shell, has correctly described Shell as an evil corporation.  read more

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