Douglas Yates Invited by Chinese TV to Comment on Recent Events in Nigeria

Friday, 22 December 2017

Douglas YatesOn 18 December 2017, AGS specialist of African politics Professor Douglas Yates was invited by the Chinese international news television station CGTN to speak about the recent rescue of Chinese workers abducted by pirates in Nigeria. Yates explained the causes for the rising number of hostage-takings since 2016 by rebel groups such as the Niger Delta Avengers. As the price of oil has dropped these groups have shifted their attacks from the hijacking of offshore platforms and tankers for illegal sales of their oil shipments, to taking hostages for ransom, at the moment a more profitable activity.

Douglas Yates on CGTNWhen asked what China can do to meet this challenge, Yates suggested promoting the economic development of the coastal region. « The main lesson that the military forces of the world have learned in trying to control Somali piracy is that the pirates are a symptom of underdevelopment, of poverty, and in this region of Nigeria if you want to stop piracy, you have to offer the people real alternatives. The oil industry has destroyed fishing in that region. The oil industry has polluted their drinking water, taken mangrove forests that used to provide an easy livelihood, and made unbearable living conditions. So the big lesson of Somali is that you have to promote development if you want to fight piracy at its roots.”

See video of the interview - starting at 14'07"

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Danny Padilla Philippines
M.A., School of International Relations
Class of 2000

quote leftThe knowledge I acquired at AGS as well as my inter-personal and diplomatic skills, developed during my AGS days, come in handy today when dealing with different government officials, staff from various UN agencies, and even my colleagues in UNESCO who come from different cultural backgrounds.quote right

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