RealNews

All Foreign Hostages off Wells, Oil Contractor Says

U.S. oil drilling contractor Transocean Inc. said on Sunday that it had evacuated all foreign hostages freed this weekend after being held on offshore rigs by striking Nigerian workers for more than two weeks. “Every expatriate worker who had stayed on the rigs longer than their normal shift because of the strike, have now all been taken off the rigs,” Guy Cantwell, spokesman of Transocean, the world’s biggest offshore drilling contractor, told Reuters. “This means everything has now been resolved,” Cantwell said by phone from the company’s base in Houston, Texas. “The people now left on the rigs are those serving their normal shifts.” The company had previously told Reuters it would take between two and three days to evacuate all the staff from the rigs off Nigeria. The first batch of about 60 former captives docked safely Saturday in the eastern Nigerian oil hub of Port Harcourt and were driven away in waiting vehicles. Nearly 100 foreign workers, including 35 Britons and 17 Americans, had been held captive on four oil rigs since April 16, when junior Nigerian oil workers began a strike to protest the dismissal of five union executives. Full Story

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