Nigerian militants over building firm staff out

MEND group said its threat against the country's largest construction firm was in reaction to a road accident in Abuja on Friday, when a Julius Berger truck crashed into a commuter bus killing at least 12 people.

Nigerian militants over building firm staff out
The most prominent Nigerian militant group on Monday threatened to attack foreign workers with construction firm Julius Berger if it does not halt operations in the capital Abuja within a week.

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) said its threat against the country's largest construction firm was in reaction to a road accident in Abuja on Friday, when a Julius Berger truck crashed into a commuter bus killing at least 12 people.

The militants have generally restricted attacks to the Niger Delta, where they are demanding a greater share of the region's oil wealth, rather than threatening action in the capital.

"Failure to vacate its staff from construction sites and halt ongoing projects in ... Abuja on the deadline will result in unprecedented deadly attacks on the expatriate staff of Julius Berger," the group said in an e-mailed statement.

Officials with the firm, the Nigerian unit of German builder Bilfinger Berger, were not immediately available for comment. A mob attacked Julius Berger employees following the incident on Friday, hurling stones at them and setting the damaged vehicle on fire.

Julius Berger, one of Nigeria's biggest private sector employers, has already halted work in the Niger Delta after two of its German employees were kidnapped last month.

MEND, responsible for most of the attacks in the delta that have cut a fifth of Nigeria's oil production since early 2006, offered to help in the release of the two captives since they were not part of the energy sector.

Reuters
Last Mod: 04 Ağustos 2008, 12:18
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