Wednesday, May 10, 2006

A bad trend

An American executive working in Nigeria for a Houston-based drilling and oil services company was shot and killed today in a coordinated attack in a crowded Port Harcourt neighborhood.

MEND (the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta) -- which had just yesterday withdrawn or denied (no one is sure which) it's 3-month cease fire offer -- has threatened coordinated attacks against individuals and facilities associated with the Delta's oil fields.

Most claim that this is not MEND's style -- American's kidnapped in March by MEND not only said they were treated well, but even declared their sympathy for MEND's cause. A diplomat (the story does not say from where) claimed that "it looks like a targeted attack on that individual but my guess is that it was a private matter."

The story goes on:

The violence stems from deep-seated resentment by many inhabitants of the Delta, where impoverished villages stand close to multibillion-dollar oil facilities.

Many residents of the vast wetlands region feel cheated out of the riches being pumped from their tribal lands.

Read the story here.

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