Amnesty International is calling for a criminal investigation into the oil giant Shell regarding allegations it was complicit in human rights abuses carried out by the Nigerian military.
A review of thousands of internal company documents and witness statements published on Tuesday points to the Anglo-Dutch organisation’s alleged involvement in the brutal campaign to silence protesters in the oil-producing Ogoniland region in the 1990s.
Amnesty is urging the UK, Nigeria and the Netherlands to consider a criminal case against Shell in light of evidence it claims amounts to “complicity in murder, rape and torture” – allegations Shell strongly denies.
While the cache of documents includes material Shell was forced to disclose as part of a civil case brought against the company and many of the allegations are long-standing, the review also examines some evidence which has not been previously reported.
It includes witness statements seen by the Guardian that allege Shell managed a unit of undercover police officers, trained by the Nigerian state security service, to carry out surveillance in Ogoniland after the oil company had publicly announced its withdrawal from the region.
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