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UpstreamOnline: Delta gunmen kidnap Polish engineer

By Upstream staff

Gunmen have kidnapped a Polish engineer near the oil city of Warri in the Niger Delta, security sources said today, bringing the total number of foreign hostages held in the Nigerian region to 16.

Six gunmen seized the Polish man, who is the chief engineer for a dredging company, at Orugbo Creek near Warri port, security experts working for oil companies were quoted as saying by Reuters.

Abductions for ransom or to press political demands are frequent in the impoverished Niger Delta.

Gunmen seized a Lebanese oil executive in Warri on Tuesday, while 14 other foreigners are being held by different armed groups across the vast wetlands.

Oil production from Nigeria is down by about 700,000 barrels per day, or almost a quarter, because of an 18-month surge in violence.

Militants have demanded regional control over oil revenues, compensation for decades of oil spills and freedom for two jailed leaders from the region.

25 May 2007

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