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June 27, 2020

Funeral of Oil Workers Killed by Biafran Commandos

Footage produced by Reuter News Archive and published on June 8, 1969, captures the funeral of 10 Italian oil workers in the Church of Santa Barbara in Metanopoli. The workers were killed by Biafran commandos in a raid close to Kwale, a town in the Mid West State of Nigeria. Proceeding the funeral, the men’s family members buried their bodies in their hometowns.

The Italian Prime Minister Mariano Rumer and some of the oil workers who had survived the raid were in attendance. Prior to their release, these workers were abducted, tried, and condemned to execution by the Biafran authorities. Declassified documents draw upon the payment of $3 million to secure the men’s release.