Algeria Hostage Crisis: Al-Qaida Seizes U.S. Citizens

algeria hostage situation

Americans are among the hostages being held after an attack by “al-Qaida-linked insurgents” on a BP run natural gas field in Algeria.

ABC News reports that US officials have confirmed that it seems that at least 41 hostages are being held, and it appears three of them are American, but those numbers could change. However, the Daily News counts the number of American hostages at seven.

Though statements made by the insurgents claim to be related to the military operations by the French in Mali, the U.S. State Department believes the attack was too well orchestrated to have been planned in such a short time. The attack itself killed two people, both of them foreigners.

This gas field is is operated by the Algerian national oil company along with BP and a Norwegian company, and Britons, Norwegians, and French and Japanese nationals are all known to work at the facility and are thought to be among the hostages.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has spoken to the American Ambassador in Algeria and reached out to Algerian Prime Minister Sellal to discuss this crisis. Interior Minister Daho Ould Kablia said on television that they will not engage in any negotiation attempts with terrorists.