UK: Terrorist incident ongoing in Algeria

2013-01-18 11:51
(Picture: AP)

(Picture: AP) (Facundo Arrizabalaga)

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London - Britain said on Friday that the "terrorist incident" was ongoing at an Algerian gas plant where dozens of foreigners were feared dead after an army assault against their Islamist hostage-takers.

"The terrorist incident in Algeria remains ongoing," said a Foreign Office spokesperson, adding that British Prime Minister David Cameron would chair a meeting of Britain's COBRA emergency committee on Friday.

"As the prime minister and foreign secretary have said, to the best of our knowledge on the information given to us by the Algerian government one British national has sadly been killed," the spokesperson said.

"We are not in a position to give further information at this time. But the prime minister has advised we should be prepared for bad news."

One Briton was killed when the gunmen seized the hostages at the southern Algerian complex on Wednesday in an attack they said had been in retaliation for the French intervention in neighbouring Mali.

Media reports said as many as 20 Britons may be unaccounted for at the BP-operated In Amenas plant.

The Foreign Office spokesperson said Cameron had spoken twice on Thursday to Algerian Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal.

The British premier was not given prior warning of the Algerian army offensive, and would have preferred to have been consulted, his spokesman said Thursday.

Read more on:    david cameron  |  algeria  |  mali  |  north africa
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