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Nigeria - Oil Hostages - 2002-04-04

Shell oil company officials say 10 of their workers who were abducted by villagers in Nigeria's Niger River Delta have been released after two days of being held hostage.

The four Nigerians, four Ghanaians, one American and one Filipino - were freed late Thursday in Amatu village, in coastal Bayelsa state.

On Tuesday, about 40 youths abducted the workers, who were working on an offshore oil rig. The youths demanded employment, oil contracts and other help from the company in return for the workers' release.

Shell said the men were freed following negotiations between Nigerian officials and the captors. Further talks are scheduled for next week in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa state capital.