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Two Kidnapped in Attacks on Nigerian Oil Targets


Nigerian officials say gunmen have kidnapped a Dutch oil worker and an oil rig security guard in separate incidents in southern Nigeria.

Both abductions occurred in Nigeria's Bayelsa state.

Bayelsa's police commissioner Thursday said the Dutch worker was kidnapped from a Royal Dutch Shell gas plant in the Gbaran area. The abduction occurred after locals organized a protest calling for better jobs and investment in the community.

The Nigerian navy says the security guard - a retired Nigerian navy officer - was kidnapped Wednesday during a raid on an offshore oil rig.

A spokesman says the raiders accused the Nigerian firm that operates the rig (Consolidated Oil) of violating an agreement with the local community.

Oil firms in the impoverished but oil-rich Niger Delta region often enter into agreements with local communities, promising investments and jobs.

A loose coalition of Nigerian militants, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, has demanded that local communities receive a greater share of the region's oil wealth.

The militants have carried out a series of attacks and kidnappings at Niger Delta oil facilities over the past year. Most of the hostages have been released unharmed.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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