After a string of attacks on Nigeria's oil infrastructure, its government plans to open talks with the newly formed militant group, the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA).
As the group continues to take key oil and gas installations out of commission in the oil-rich Niger Delta region, Nigeria's president, Muhammadu Buhari reportedly has appointed a team to begin a dialogue with "everyone involved" in the situation.
Additionally, the country's oil minister, Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu said that the military would scale back the hunt for the militants in the south, the source of much of the country's oil.
The Niger Delta Avengers have threatened to reduce the nation's oil output to zero, and on 3 June, the group blew up a pipeline operated by Eni, and set off explosions on pipelines belonging Shell Petroleum Company of Nigeria.
The group is demanding that all international companies leave the region and hand over full control of the oil resources in the delta.
In this revival of Niger Delta militancy, the NDA replaces the earlier Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), which launched attacks on the oil infrastructure in the 2000s. Those attacks ceased when the government offered amnesty and cash to members of the movement.
On a related note, the Nigerian government has also offered to improve the business climate to benefit its people.
Earlier this year, Niger Delta Avengers promised to make oil companies suffer as "you have made the people of the Niger Delta suffer over the years from environmental degradation and environment pollution."
The group alleges that the president favors oil interests over those of the people in the area. The vice president of the country stated that the administration will "work to ensure that the man on the street in the Niger Delta receives the benefit from all that is available there."
According to UPI, the World Bank estimates that 70 percent of the government revenue in Nigeria comes from oil.
By Lincoln Brown for Oilprice.com