Militants blow up natural gas pipeline in Nigeria's delta state

YENAGOA, Nigeria (Reuters) - Militants of the Urhobo minority ethnic group blew up a natural gas pipeline in Nigeria's Delta state in the early hours on Friday, a Nigerian official said on Saturday.

"The Urhobo militants who carried out the attack have claimed responsibility," said Isa Ado, spokesman for the Pulo Shield taskforce, made up of members of various Nigerian security forces investigating oil theft in Nigeria's oil-producing delta region.

Ado added that the militants were trying to draw attention to their exclusion from lucrative pipeline protection contracts with the state oil company.

(Reporting By Tife Owolabi, Writing by Julia Payne, Editing by Robin Pomeroy)