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Tanker damaged in Nigeria attack

BBC News

Nigerian militants

Militants say they are fighting for a fairer distribution of oil money

Militants from Nigeria’s Niger Delta region have attacked a tanker carrying thousands of tonnes of diesel and kidnapped a Romanian crew member.

The unidentified militants blew up the ship’s engine with dynamite, security sources said.

The attack happened in the major shipping lane off the Rivers State coast just within the military protection zone for vessels.

The vessel is believed to be still at sea and seriously damaged.

The MT Meredith was carrying 4000 tonnes of diesel from Lagos to Port Harcourt, security sources said.

Some militant groups say they are fighting for a fairer distribution of wealth from Nigeria’s oil.

But there are many armed groups in the Delta who make money out of extortion, kidnapping and oil theft under the direction of powerful and well connected political figures.

The United Kingdom has promised military training to help the government combat the problem.

Acts of piracy in the waters off the Niger Delta are common.

Oil production has been cut by a fifth in the last three years partly as a result of violence. 

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