The Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) militant group today claimed responsibility for an attack on a gas pipeline belonging to the state-run oil company in southern Nigeria.
"At 11:30 pm on Sunday, the NDA blew up Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) gas pipeline at Nsit-Ibom," in Akwa Ibom state, the group said in a terse statement.
NNPC officials were not immediately available for comment, but the attack is bound to worsen gas supplies to power plants in a country reeling from daily outages.
The Avengers have claimed a string of devastating attacks against the NNPC as well as oil majors Shell, Chevron, Exxon and Eni since February.
The attacks have reduced output at a time when Nigeria is struggling with low global crude prices which have hammered government revenues, weakening the country's naira currency and pushing up inflation to near 11-year highs.
The rebels want oil majors to leave the Niger delta, blaming them for contributing to widespread poverty and under-development of the region.
The group also wants self-determination for the oil-producing states in the delta region and political autonomy.
The Avengers have rejected a government truce to end violence.