NOVEMBER 9, 2006


On this day, at least 9 hostages escaped from an oil facility where they had been held along with dozens of other people since armed militant youths raided Agip, the Italian-run Tebidaba pumping station, in Bayelsa State.

According to one of the escapees, they had walked for 12 hours through creeks full of snakes and crocodiles to reach the town of Port Harcourt.

He also said they had been beaten by the militants, who were demanding a ransom for their release. At least 30 others are still being held.

The armed militants invaded the oil facility operated by the Italians, effectively shutting in 50,000 bpd from the flow station at Tebidaba.

About 48 Agip workers and security staff were being held at the flow station, located deep in the mangrove swamps of Bayelsa state in southern Nigeria.

“We were all asked to lie on the floor, face down. We were battered, bullied and harassed mercilessly until the next morning,” one of the escaped worker said. “They never ceased firing their guns, it was a horrifying experience.”

He added that a soldier had been shot when he refused to surrender his gun.

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