British oil worker taken from Nigerian rig

Militants have abducted a British worker after boarding an oil rig off the coast of Nigeria, drilling company Transocean has said.

The US firm said armed men left 23 other workers unharmed after leaving Trident 8 rig with their sole captive, who is said to be a subcontractor for local firm ConOil.

Kidnappings of foreign oil workers have become commonplace in Nigeria, with dozens taken during the last three weeks alone.

Hostages are usually treated well and returned safely, but the authorities often have no way of knowing if their captors are politically or financially motivated.

"There has been one Transocean sub-contractor taken from the Trident 8 rig. There are another 23 people on the rig and they are all safe," said Transocean spokesman Guy Cantwell.

Militant groups in Nigeria's oil rich Niger Delta region are campaigning for greater wealth distribution and more autonomy.

Nigeria is the world's eighth largest exporter of oil.

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