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Wednesday, September 29, 2004

BBC NEWS | Africa | Talks to end Nigeria oil crisis

BBC NEWS | Africa | Talks to end Nigeria oil crisis: "Talks to end Nigeria oil crisis
Senior officials have held a meeting with the leader of a militia based in Nigeria's main oil region following his threat to attack foreign oil workers.
Dokubo Asari had said he had gone to the capital, Abuja, to meet the president but this was denied.
His threat was one reason why world oil prices reached a record high of $50 a barrel this week.
He says he is fighting for the rights of the Ijaw people but the authorities have dismissed him as an oil thief.
Mr Asari says he flew to Abuja with five colleagues on a presidential jet and that the meeting was at the request of a presidential envoy who travelled to the creeks in the Niger Delta to see him.
But this was strongly denied.
'There is no such appointment with the president,' said Mr Obasanjo's spokeswoman Remi Oyo.
There is no word of what came out of the talks.
Production hit
On Tuesday, Nigeria's military warned Mr Asari's Niger Delta People's Volunteer Force that it would take off the 'kid gloves' unless the militia stops threatening oil workers.
The militia said foreign oil companies must cease production or face 'all-out war' in the Niger Delta from 1 October.

Anglo-Dutch oil company, Shell, the biggest oil company in Nigeria, has boosted security following the threats.
Nigeria is the world's seventh largest exporter of oil, but 70% of the population live in poverty.
A statement from Shell described the region as still tense and said that the movement of employees and supplies had been curtailed.
Oil production has also been affected.
The Santa Barbara flow station, which produces 28,000 barrels per day, has been shut down because the company cannot rea"

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