Mend rebels mend their ways again with new ceasefire
Nigeria's Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (Mend), the main armed group in the oil-rich region, says it will abide by an indefinite ceasefire, having threatened to take up arms again shortly after senior leaders accepted a presidential amnesty. Mend now says it is encouraged by the government's readiness to engage in serious talks. Some 15,000 rebels in the Delta have surrendered their arms and taken amnesty, refraining from attacks on oil facilities in a conflict fuelled by poverty, the redistribution of oil wealth and widespread petroleum pollution. Nigeria is said to be planning to give 10% of oil revenues to people in the Delta, although widespread corruption has prevented Mend from believing the government’s sincerity until – perhaps - now.
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