Nigerian activists’ widows give up case against Shell

The widows of four activists executed by the Nigerian government in the 1990s have ended their case for damages against Shell.

Earlier this year the The Hague district court ruled that it could not be proven that the oil company had bribed witnesses and was responsible for the execution of nine men who had campaigned against Shell’s drilling for oil in the Ogoniland region.

The Ogoni Nine, as they became known, were condemned to death by a military court and hanged in 1995. Among them was the writer Ken Saro-Wiwa.

In a statement quoted by Reuters, the women’s lawyer Channa Samkalden said the women had been left ‘disappointed and frustrated’ at having to cancel their appeal. ‘This has been a lengthy and demanding procedure, which makes them relive horrible events, while the outcome is most uncertain,’ Samkalden said.

Shell paid a €15.5 million settlement to the relatives of some of the victims in 2009 but has never admitted it had any part in the events that led up to the executions.

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