Additional army and police units
in the Niger River Delta area have reduced the violence between gangs, but not
eliminated it. A fifth of the nations oil shipments are still blocked by
violence in the region. The major problems are caused by the gangs that work
for politicians (especially during election time). In the Delta, these gangs are
rewarded with security contracts by oil companies. These political gangs
sometimes fight each other for turf, insults or possession of a security
contract. The "enemy" is the oil stealing gangs, who also fight each
other over control of territory (which oil pipelines, that can be tapped,
November 13, 2007: In the Bakassi region of
neighboring Cameroon, 21 police were killed when their boat was attacked by men
wearing Nigerian army uniforms. Ten of the attackers were killed, and one of their
boats sunk. Nigeria said the attackers were probably tribal separatists from
the nearby Niger River Delta. UN mediation awarded the disputed, and oil rich,
area to Cameroon, but Nigeria resisted complying for several years. Most
residents of Bakassi consider themselves Nigerian, but do not want to move. The
Bakassi decision was part of a UN mediation that covered several other disputed
bits along over a thousand kilometers of the border with Cameroon.
Nigeria got some small areas as well. Bakassi, however, contains a lot of
November 12, 2007: Police in the largely
Moslem north, arrested at least ten members of the "Nigerian Taliban"
and accused them of consorting with al Qaeda and planning terrorist operations.
The "Nigerian Taliban" have no connection with Afghanistan, but for
the last five years have been trying to impose a strict Islamic lifestyle on
Nigerian Moslems. This has been unsuccessful, but the group has also made
several attacks on the police, and the police have retaliated. Dozens have been
killed or wounded in these actions. Now the police believe the group was
planning a bombing campaign against the government.
In the Niger River
Delta, about fifty separatist rebels, in seven speed boats, attacked a large
oil shipping facility. One civilian bystander was killed, and the rebels
managed to steal a police patrol boat and a two machine-guns before being