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The Guardian: Shell Nigeria Exports Halted by Protests

Wednesday May 30, 2007 9:46 PM

LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) – Protesters besieged a major pipeline center feeding a Royal Dutch Shell PLC oil export terminal in Nigeria, forcing the company to suspend exports of 150,000 barrels a day, a company official said Wednesday.

The protesters tampered with some pipeline equipment and forced the shutdown of Shell’s Bomu Manifold center Monday in the Ogoni district of Nigeria’s southern oil region, said company spokesman Precious Okolobo.

“We had to defer export of 150,000 barrels per day,” Okolobo said.

It was the second disruption of supply on the pipeline, which sends oil from onshore facilities around the city of Port Harcourt to Shell’s Bonny oil export terminal.

Growing lawlessness, including armed attacks, in the oil-rich Niger Delta have cut about a quarter of exports from Africa’s leading oil producer. The impoverished region has nearly all of Nigeria’s oil, and most inhabitants want an increased share of revenue.

Some 200 foreign workers have been kidnapped since armed militants stepped up their attacks against oil companies and the government in late 2005. Most have been quickly released for ransom.

In his inaugural speech Tuesday, President Umaru Yar’Adua appeal for an immediate end to violence in the region of swamps, creeks and mangrove forests. The largest militant group said it would consider the overture.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/worldlatest/story/0,,-6671592,00.html

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