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7 illegal refinery installations in Rivers were destroyed by airstrikes for oil theft.



Over the weekend, 7 illegal oil refinery installations in Rivers State were destroyed by airstrikes carried out by Operation Delta Safe’s air component to prevent oil thieves and operators of such sites.

“It proved successful as 7 illegal refining sites were identified and destroyed,” said Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet, Director of NAF Public Relations and Information, of the attacks on Cawthorne Channel and Bille, both in the Degema Local Government Area of Rivers State.

Additionally, it prevented oil thieves from operating their illicit oil refinery sites and stealing from burst pipes while harming the environment.

According to Air Commodore Gabkwet, on September 15, 2023, four operational illicit refining installations with surface storage tanks and dug-out reservoirs that may have been used to store illegally refined items were spotted in Cawthorne Channel.

“Thereafter, the sites were demolished. Similar airstrikes were also carried out at Bille on September 16, 2023, and early on September 17, 2023.

“Three illicit oil refineries with reservoirs and storage tanks were demolished there.

“A cotonou boat believed to be syphoning crude oil from a flow station was engaged in numerous passes and destroyed in one of the spots.

Cawthorne Channel and Bille have been responsible for the majority of oil theft and illegal oil refining activities in Rivers State during the past two months.

The Land, Maritime, and Air Components of Operation Delta Safe have destroyed over 30 illicit oil refinery installations in these 2 areas during this time.

These efforts will continue in these places and other places until oil thieves and their allies stop their unlawful behaviour.

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