Nigeria was considering suspending military operations against Niger Delta Militants for about two weeks to allow negotiations with aggrieved parties in the oil rich but dilapidated region to take place, Petroleum Minister, Ibe Kachikwu, suggested on Monday.
Mr. Kachikwu while speaking with journalists called on the militants to shelve violence and embrace dialogue, adding that the planned suspension of military offensive is to allow for individuals in the creeks to converge for the dialogue.
Avengers, a new militant group blowing up oil and gas installations in the region, has crippled Nigeria’s oil output to its lowest in about 20 years, forced oil companies to relocate staff and threatened that it will paralyse completely.
British Foreign Minister, Mr. Philip Hammond, had warned Mr. Buhari last month that force alone may not be enough. But Mr.Buhari adopted a strong stance, sending in warships, gunboats and fighter jets to eliminate the militants.
But even with a that oil installations were still being hit.
With the suspension of hostilities, many argue that the government is doing last what it should have done first.
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