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Nigeria Deports Oil Filmmaker

Researched by Kerry Headley and Jennifer Gibson

An award-winning American filmmaker was deported from Nigeria after being arrested and imprisoned on spying charges. Andrew Berends had been living in Nigeria making a film about life in the oil-rich Niger Delta, where military factions, acting on behalf of multinational corporations like Chevron and Shell Oil have killed more than 2,000 people who resisted the oil companies. Berends and his translator were imprisoned and interrogated by Nigerian police, military and state security officers for thirty-six hours straight without food, water or sleep. Human rights and media freedom groups cite the deportation as the latest in a series of detentions and deportations of foreign journalists working in Nigeria. Berends is a recipient of the International Documentary Association’s Courage Under Fire award for his work in Iraq. It was unclear whether Berends was able to leave Nigeria with the material he collected while filming.

“Nigeria Deports Oil Filmmaker” Aaron Glantz, One World.net, 9/11/2008 http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2008/09/11-8