After the nearby terrorist attack, Total has decided to evacuate all its staff at the gas station in northeastern Mozambique.
FDue to the danger of terrorists, they chose to evacuate. The French organization Total evacuated all its employees from gas stations in northeastern Mozambique nine days after the jihadist attacked neighboring Palma. The multi-billion-euro project stalled on Friday. On March 24, armed groups attacked a port city of Palma with 75,000 residents, killing dozens of civilians, police and soldiers. The well-prepared raid was only a few kilometers away from the large natural gas project on the Afungi Peninsula, and the Islamic State group claimed to have carried out a raid.
“Total has decided to evacuate all personnel. At the moment, all facilities are abandoned,” a military source told AFP on Friday. A security source confirmed: “The total is missing.” According to a security source, the rebels have been spotted near the Total base in recent days. In addition, thousands of people fleeing Palma flocked to the ruins of the Afungi Peninsula for 9 days.
Although the port of Pemba, more than 200 kilometers away, was evacuated by boat, the number of displaced persons continued to increase. Last Friday, nearly 15,000 people were in the natural gas franchise, and thousands were at the main entrance of the site. The armed group, known locally as Al-Shabab (“youth” in Arabic), has destroyed the poor but natural gas-rich province of Capo Delgado on the border with Tanzania for more than three years.
The future natural gas extraction, described as “Fort Apache”, which was originally scheduled to be put into use in 2024, is now protected by the Mozambican army. The soldiers have been trying to regain Palma for several days, and Palma fell into the hands of the rebels on the night of March 26-27. Chongo Vidigal, the commander who coordinated the military operations, assured the public on Thursday that the natural gas project was “protected.”
The French energy giant did not deplore any casualties, and the site was not directly targeted. But since the end of December, following a series of jihadist attacks nearby, work has been suspended. Some staff have been evacuated.
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On the day of the attack, the French giant announced that it would resume construction work on the site. Experts believe that, given the scale of the attack and the preparations required, it seems unlikely to be related to this announcement. According to statistics from the International Organization for Migration (IOM), a total of more than 9,100 people were displaced by the attack. According to the United Nations, 40% of the more than 110,000 people in Parma have fled violence in other parts of the province.
Many people who fled Palma Island were taken in by the United Nations and NGOs, dehydrated, barefoot and shocked after spending days in the bushes without drinking or eating on fishing boats or hiking.
Before the attack on Palma, the NGO Acled had recorded 2,600 deaths, half of which were civilians. The United Nations also said that violence is also the root cause of humanitarian crises. The humanitarian crises are likely to worsen and more than 670,000 people have been forced to leave their homes.