Nigeria says it is conceivable that militants from its Niger Delta may
have been behind Tuesday's attack on Equatorial Guinea's presidential
palace. Foreign Minister Ojo Maduekwe says Nigeria condemns the
The foreign minister says it is not clear
whether militants from the Niger Delta or foreign mercenaries may have
been behind the sea-borne attack. Maduekwe was also quick to distance
the Nigerian government from the incident.
investigations we've been able to make and the reports we have show
that even the authorities in Equatorial Guinea, themselves, are yet
very certain as to the identities of those people. But, whoever they
are, whether they are militants from the Niger Delta or they are
foreign mercenaries from outside Africa, because we have also heard of
speculation in that direction, these kinds of acts must be condemned,"
Security forces in oil-producing Equatorial
Guinea say they repelled an assault on the presidential palace by
gunmen in motor boats, in the coastal city, Malabo, about 200
kilometers from the Nigerian oil city, Port Harcourt.
Guinea's government says it believes the attackers had come from
Nigeria's restive Niger Delta. Reports from Malabo say 15 people have
been arrested in the assault. Nigerian currency and armbands were said
to have been found on those killed or captured by security forces.
main militant group - the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger
Delta - dismisses the charge that it was involved in the raid.
Equatorial Guinea, a former Spanish colony, is the third biggest oil producer in sub-Saharan Africa, after Nigeria and Angola.
analysts warn that shipping and oil operations in the Gulf of Guinea
could come under threat, in the face of increased attacks in the waters
bordering Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea.