Algeria hostages 'made to wear explosives'

2013-01-17 10:26

Paris - Islamist militants holding dozens of Western hostages at a gas plant in Algeria have forced some to wear belts strapped with explosives, French television said on Thursday, quoting one of the hostages.

France 24 said the man also told the channel during a telephone call late on Wednesday that the hostage-takers were heavily armed and had threatened to blow up the natural gas facility if the Algerian army tried to free the hostages.

"They attacked the two sites at the same time. They went inside and once it was daylight they gathered everybody together," the man, who sounded calm, said in the only part of the phone call that France 24 aired.

Gunmen stormed the gas pumping site and workers' housing before dawn on Wednesday and a group calling itself the "Battalion of Blood" has claimed it is holding 41 foreigners including Americans, Japanese and Europeans at Tigantourine, deep in the Sahara.

The French government has not confirmed whether there are French nationals among the hostages.

Europe 1 radio said that according to its sources four French nationals could be among the hostages.

France 24 said it had no way of verifying whether the man it spoke to, an employee at the site who declined to be named, was speaking under duress.

  • john.turner.58760608 - 2013-01-17 10:52

    If only these Looney Tunes put half as much effort into doing something useful/peaceful as they do waging death and destruction, the world would be a much better place.

      lestine.stevens - 2013-01-17 11:58

      @erich...reprisal for speaking out is too ghastly to contemplate hence the silence...death has it's reward and when life is seen as a mere dillusion, to kill becomes so much more real..a way of life

      lestine.stevens - 2013-01-17 11:58

      death has a them life is but a conduit only

  • Sidney Olifant - 2013-01-17 11:08

    Thats nice Islamists must do as they please and if you dare to say something they kill more

  • angelanair3 - 2013-01-17 11:32

    Ooooh I hate these terrorists! They do nothing constructive for themselves or their own people - oxygen thieves! The world really must stop pandering to these terrorists - but at the moment that is impossible - seeing a the have hostages! And in the name of religion - theirs! They are a demented lot - fighting for rights that they will trample on -when they get............

  • compos.mentis.58 - 2013-01-17 11:33

    Ahh the peace loving actions of religion...

  • Jaco JP Venter - 2013-01-17 11:41

    Not all Islam ist is like that you must remember it is always a group of extremist people that are brain wash that are making all look bad in South Africa we have the same thing called Boeremag or AWB those people are extremist and always goes overboard and not all Afrikaners is thinking like them the same with the Islam ist.

      kimard - 2013-01-17 11:58

      yes dont forget about the terrorist group called ANC

      abner.mophethe - 2013-01-17 12:14

      im glad you think this way Jaco,i personnaly know some white people i work with and are not extreme,the problem is we are all to blame for the state of affairs because we are not speaking out or doing anything against extremisim of any sort,we suffer in silence,

  • abner.mophethe - 2013-01-17 12:10

    would it help if all extremists could be given a huge piece of land like the sahara desert to practice their religion as they please without outside influence?

  • Sammy Willow - 2013-01-17 12:10

    not all Muslims are terrorists, but all terrorists are Muslim, go figure

      Iqhawe_eliqotho - 2013-01-17 14:05

      Anders Behring Breivik. Really? Are they?

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