Nigerian kills militants in Niger Delta

1447

Nigeria‘s navy has killed seven militants in a gun battle in the creeks of the Niger Delta, home to Africa‘s largest oil and gas industry, a military spokesman said this morning.

Responding to a distress call by three passenger boats, the navy killed the militants on Tuesday in a shootout along the Isaka-Bakana waterway near Bonny in southern Nigeria‘s Rivers state, navy spokesman Edward Yeibo said.

“We trailed the militants to their camp, rescued the boats and recovered (their weapons),” he said according to Reuters.

Security forces last month launched their biggest offensive in years against militants in nearby Delta state, bombarding militant camps from the air and sea and sending three battalions of soldiers to hunt down rebels in surrounding communities.

But Rivers and Bayelsa, the two other main states in the Niger Delta, have been relatively calm with no reports so far of any major military offensive on the scale of the operations carried out around the port of Warri in Delta state.

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), the region’s main militant group, has declared an “all-out war” against the military and bombed a Chevron pipeline last week forcing a loss in output of 100,000 barrels per day (bpd).