Wires

UPDATE 1-Aquarius Platinum CEO Murray resigns

* No reason given for CEO's departure

* Third platinum boss to leave this year

* Shares fall over 6 percent

(Adds details, background, analyst comments, shares)

LONDON, Oct 8 (Reuters) - The chief executive of AquariusPlatinum , the world's fourth-largest platinum miner, hasresigned with immediate effect, the company said on Monday,giving no reason for his departure after more than a decade atthe company.

The news sent London-listed shares in Aquarius, the thirdmajor platinum miner to lose its chief executive this year, down6.3 percent to 44.5 pence at 0750 GMT, underperforming a 1.4percent drop in the broader mining sector .

Aquarius has been hit along with the rest of the SouthAfrica-focused platinum sector by labour unrest and soaringcosts. It was forced to temporarily suspend operations at itsKroondal mine last month.

"Stuart Murray has pretty much been the face of AquariusPlatinum," Nomura analysts said in a morning note.

"After an extremely difficult last three years for thecompany there will be plenty of speculation surrounding whetheror not there is more bad news to come."

A replacement for Murray - who was also chairman of theminer's principal, South African subsidiary - will be considered"in due course", it said in a statement, adding that he willcontinue at Aquarius until Mar. 31 to facilitate an "orderlyhandover".

Since August nearly 50 people have been killed in labourconflict in the crucial South African mining sector afterstrikes for higher wages started in the platinum industry,causing the worst social unrest in the country since the end ofapartheid in 1994.

The miner, which in August reported a full-year loss for the12 months ended June 30, also said that Jean Nel, formerlycommercial director, would become its chief operating officer.

(Reporting by Clara Ferreira-Marques; editing by Sarah Young)

((clara.ferreira-marques@thomsonreuters.com)(+44 207 5423214)(Reuters Messaging:clara.ferreira-marques.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

Keywords: AQUARIUS/