Illustration for article titled On Second Thought: Niger Delta Militants End Ceasefire

MEND has decided the niceties with the government are over. From Al Jazeera:

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (Mend) said the move to end the truce on on September 15 was in response to the government's 60-day amnesty programme.

The government has invited fighter groups to hand in their weapons in return for cash, jobs and pardons under the scheme.

Mend, a loose coalition of militant groups in the Niger Delta, denounced the hundreds of rebels that have participated in the amnesty, which began two weeks ago.

"The ongoing amnesty programme by the government of Nigeria seems to have achieved separating those who still have the zeal to fight for our freedom from those who were in it for the money," the group said in a statement.

Mend declared a two-month ceasefire in July to allow for peace talks, but said it was now suspending negotiations with the government.

Hundreds of militant group members surrendered their weapons, mortar bombs and gunboats on Saturday.

While some have given up their weapons, many in the delta refuse.

[O]ther militant group commanders in the delta's creeks had shown no such willingness to take part in the ceremony.

Attacks on pipelines and industry facilities - along with the kidnapping of oil workers - since early 2006 have cost the world's eighth-biggest oil exporter billions of dollars a year in lost revenues and added to volatility in global energy prices.

A previous attempt at disarmament under Yar'Adua's predecessor Olusegun Obasanjo in 2004 broke down as factions argued over the money paid for their weapons.


Get the full scoop here.


Share This Story

Get our newsletter