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    Hostages reported taken from rig and support vessel

    News // November 10, 2010

    According to a report from AFP, security forces in Nigeria are trying to free seven foreign hostages after an attack on an oil rig and support vessel off Nigeria.

    The hostages taken in the pre-dawn attack on Monday included two Americans, two French, two Indonesians and one Canadian, according to a source with the company that oversees the rig, Afren. Two people were also wounded.

    AFP said it was unclear whether a ransom had been demanded, as is usually the case with kidnappings in the turbulent Niger Delta region, the heart of Nigeria's lucrative oil industry.

    In the immediate aftermath of the attack, Afren had said there were five hostages. The company source said on Tuesday that seven had now been confirmed in the two incidents, including the assault on the support vessel and rig.

    "We can confirm this morning that there are seven hostages," the source said. "The nationality of the additional two are Indonesian."

    He added that "as far as the information I have, seven is the total."

    The two people wounded in the attack were in stable condition and receiving medical treatment, he said. A security source said one person was shot in the leg after resisting the attackers.

    Afren provided few details on the attack itself, though gunmen often use speedboats to carry out such kidnappings. It occurred at the Okoro field, some 12km (eight miles) off the coast of Akwa Ibom state.

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