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40 000 Nigerians will be heard in court over Shell oil spills; company contests lawsuits

Royal Dutch Shell will face environmental claims in a London high court, from two Nigerian communities who have suffered pollution episodes following repeated large-scale oil spills from the oil giant’s pipelines in the Niger Delta. The company is contesting the lawsuits. Both Royal Dutch Shell and the company's subsidiary in Nigeria, Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd (SPDC), argue that the cases should be heard in Nigeria and not in the English courts. The company has already paid out GBP55 million, or roughly $80 million, to compensate another Niger Delta-based community in a settlement reached last year after they brought a separate lawsuit in London. In that instance, Shell admitted the spills were caused by operational failures. 

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