Algeria hostage crisis

Algerian forces are scouring the Sahara desert for five foreigners

missing since Islamist militants attacked a remote natural gas plant, an

official said Jan. 22.

Algerian firemen carry a coffin containing a person killed during the gas facility hostage situation at the morgue in Ain Amenas, Algeria, Monday, Jan. 21, 2013. At least 81 people have been reported dead, including 32 Islamist militants, after a bloody, four-day hostage situation at Algeria's remote Ain Amenas natural gas plant. (AP Photo/Anis Belghoul)
Algerian firemen carry a coffin containing a person killed during the gas facility hostage situation at the morgue in Ain Amenas, Algeria, Monday, Jan. 21, 2013. At least 81 people have been reported dead, including 32 Islamist militants, after a bloody, four-day hostage situation at Algeria's remote Ain Amenas natural gas plant. (AP Photo/Anis Belghoul)
Algerian firemen carry a coffin containing a person killed during the gas facility hostage situation at the morgue in Ain Amenas, Algeria, Monday, Jan. 21, 2013. At least 81 people have been reported dead, including 32 Islamist militants, after a bloody, four-day hostage situation at Algeria's remote Ain Amenas natural gas plant. (AP Photo/Anis Belghoul)
Joseph Balmaceda, center, one of the four Filipino oil field workers who was wounded but survived the terrorist attacks of an oil field in Algeria, limps to his waiting vehicle after talking to the media at the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration in Manila, Philippines, Monday Jan. 21, 2013. In a separate briefing by the Department of Foreign Affairs, Spokesman Raul Hernandez said six Filipino workers were killed and four more are still unaccounted for. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)
Joseph Balmaceda, center, one of the four Filipino oil field workers who was wounded but survived the terrorist attacks of an oil field in Algeria, limps to his waiting vehicle after talking to the media at the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration in Manila, Philippines, Monday Jan. 21, 2013. In a separate briefing by the Department of Foreign Affairs, Spokesman Raul Hernandez said six Filipino workers were killed and four more are still unaccounted for. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)
Joseph Balmaceda, center, one of the four Filipino oil field workers who was wounded but survived the terrorist attacks of an oil field in Algeria, limps to his waiting vehicle after talking to the media at the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration in Manila, Philippines, Monday Jan. 21, 2013. In a separate briefing by the Department of Foreign Affairs, Spokesman Raul Hernandez said six Filipino workers were killed and four more are still unaccounted for. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)
Algerian special police unit officers guard the entrance of an hospital located near the gas plant where hostages have been kidnapped by Islamic militants, in Ain Amenas, Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. Algeria's special forces stormed the natural gas complex in the middle of the Sahara desert in a final assault Saturday, killing 11 militants, but not before they in turn killed seven hostages, the state news agency reported.(AP Photo/Anis Belghoul)
Algerian special police unit officers guard the entrance of an hospital located near the gas plant where hostages have been kidnapped by Islamic militants, in Ain Amenas, Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. Algeria's special forces stormed the natural gas complex in the middle of the Sahara desert in a final assault Saturday, killing 11 militants, but not before they in turn killed seven hostages, the state news agency reported.(AP Photo/Anis Belghoul)
Algerian special police unit officers guard the entrance of an hospital located near the gas plant where hostages have been kidnapped by Islamic militants, in Ain Amenas, Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. Algeria's special forces stormed the natural gas complex in the middle of the Sahara desert in a final assault Saturday, killing 11 militants, but not before they in turn killed seven hostages, the state news agency reported.(AP Photo/Anis Belghoul)
In this image made from video, a group of people believed to be hostages kneel in the sand with their hands in the air at an unknown location in Algeria. Algerian de-mining teams were scouring a gas refinery on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013 that was the scene of a bloody four-day standoff, searching for explosive traps left by the Islamist militants who took dozens of foreigners hostage. The siege left at least 23 captives dead, and the American government warned that there were credible threats of more kidnapping attempts on Westerners. (AP Photo/Ennahar TV) ALGERIA OUT, TV OUT
In this image made from video, a group of people believed to be hostages kneel in the sand with their hands in the air at an unknown location in Algeria. Algerian de-mining teams were scouring a gas refinery on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013 that was the scene of a bloody four-day standoff, searching for explosive traps left by the Islamist militants who took dozens of foreigners hostage. The siege left at least 23 captives dead, and the American government warned that there were credible threats of more kidnapping attempts on Westerners. (AP Photo/Ennahar TV) ALGERIA OUT, TV OUT
In this image made from video, a group of people believed to be hostages kneel in the sand with their hands in the air at an unknown location in Algeria. Algerian de-mining teams were scouring a gas refinery on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013 that was the scene of a bloody four-day standoff, searching for explosive traps left by the Islamist militants who took dozens of foreigners hostage. The siege left at least 23 captives dead, and the American government warned that there were credible threats of more kidnapping attempts on Westerners. (AP Photo/Ennahar TV) ALGERIA OUT, TV OUT
In this image taken from Algerian TV broadcast on Sunday Jan. 20 2013, showing what it said was the aftermath of the hostage crisis at the remote Ain Amenas gas facility in Algeria. Algerian special forces stormed the plant on Saturday to end the four-day siege, moving in to thwart what government officials said was a plot by the Islamic extremists to blow up the complex and kill all their captives with mines sown throughout the site. (AP Photo/Algerie TV via Assiaciated Press TV) ** TV OUT ALGERIA OUT **
In this image taken from Algerian TV broadcast on Sunday Jan. 20 2013, showing what it said was the aftermath of the hostage crisis at the remote Ain Amenas gas facility in Algeria. Algerian special forces stormed the plant on Saturday to end the four-day siege, moving in to thwart what government officials said was a plot by the Islamic extremists to blow up the complex and kill all their captives with mines sown throughout the site. (AP Photo/Algerie TV via Assiaciated Press TV) ** TV OUT ALGERIA OUT **
In this image taken from Algerian TV broadcast on Sunday Jan. 20 2013, showing what it said was the aftermath of the hostage crisis at the remote Ain Amenas gas facility in Algeria. Algerian special forces stormed the plant on Saturday to end the four-day siege, moving in to thwart what government officials said was a plot by the Islamic extremists to blow up the complex and kill all their captives with mines sown throughout the site. (AP Photo/Algerie TV via Assiaciated Press TV) ** TV OUT ALGERIA OUT **
This image from video provided by the SITE Intel Group made available Thursday Jan. 17, 2013, purports to show militant militia leader Moktar Belmoktar. Algerian officials scrambled Thursday Jan. 17, 2013 for a way to end an armed standoff deep in the Sahara desert with Islamic militants who have taken dozens of foreigners hostage, turning to tribal Algerian Tuareg leaders for talks and contemplating an international force. The group claiming responsibility — called Katibat Moulathamine or the Masked Brigade — says it has captured 41 foreigners, including seven Americans, in the surprise attack Wednesday on the Ain Amenas gas plant. Algerian Interior Minister Daho Ould Kabila said the roughly 20 well armed gunmen were from Algeria itself, operating under orders from Moktar Belmoktar, al-Qaida's strongman in the Sahara. (AP Photo/SITE Intel Group) THE ASSOCIATED PRESS HAS NO WAY OF INDEPENDENTLY VERIFYING THE CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS PICTURE. MANDATORY CREDIT: SITE Intel Group
This image from video provided by the SITE Intel Group made available Thursday Jan. 17, 2013, purports to show militant militia leader Moktar Belmoktar. Algerian officials scrambled Thursday Jan. 17, 2013 for a way to end an armed standoff deep in the Sahara desert with Islamic militants who have taken dozens of foreigners hostage, turning to tribal Algerian Tuareg leaders for talks and contemplating an international force. The group claiming responsibility — called Katibat Moulathamine or the Masked Brigade — says it has captured 41 foreigners, including seven Americans, in the surprise attack Wednesday on the Ain Amenas gas plant. Algerian Interior Minister Daho Ould Kabila said the roughly 20 well armed gunmen were from Algeria itself, operating under orders from Moktar Belmoktar, al-Qaida's strongman in the Sahara. (AP Photo/SITE Intel Group) THE ASSOCIATED PRESS HAS NO WAY OF INDEPENDENTLY VERIFYING THE CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS PICTURE. MANDATORY CREDIT: SITE Intel Group
This image from video provided by the SITE Intel Group made available Thursday Jan. 17, 2013, purports to show militant militia leader Moktar Belmoktar. Algerian officials scrambled Thursday Jan. 17, 2013 for a way to end an armed standoff deep in the Sahara desert with Islamic militants who have taken dozens of foreigners hostage, turning to tribal Algerian Tuareg leaders for talks and contemplating an international force. The group claiming responsibility — called Katibat Moulathamine or the Masked Brigade — says it has captured 41 foreigners, including seven Americans, in the surprise attack Wednesday on the Ain Amenas gas plant. Algerian Interior Minister Daho Ould Kabila said the roughly 20 well armed gunmen were from Algeria itself, operating under orders from Moktar Belmoktar, al-Qaida's strongman in the Sahara. (AP Photo/SITE Intel Group) THE ASSOCIATED PRESS HAS NO WAY OF INDEPENDENTLY VERIFYING THE CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS PICTURE. MANDATORY CREDIT: SITE Intel Group
Two British hostages Peter, left, and Alan, right, (no family name available), are seen after being released, in a street of Ain Amenas, near the gas plant where they have been kidnapped by Islamic militants, Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. Algeria's special forces stormed the natural gas complex in the middle of the Sahara desert in a final assault Saturday, killing 11 militants, but not before they in turn killed seven hostages, the state news agency reported.(AP Photo/Anis Belghoul)
Two British hostages Peter, left, and Alan, right, (no family name available), are seen after being released, in a street of Ain Amenas, near the gas plant where they have been kidnapped by Islamic militants, Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. Algeria's special forces stormed the natural gas complex in the middle of the Sahara desert in a final assault Saturday, killing 11 militants, but not before they in turn killed seven hostages, the state news agency reported.(AP Photo/Anis Belghoul)
Two British hostages Peter, left, and Alan, right, (no family name available), are seen after being released, in a street of Ain Amenas, near the gas plant where they have been kidnapped by Islamic militants, Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. Algeria's special forces stormed the natural gas complex in the middle of the Sahara desert in a final assault Saturday, killing 11 militants, but not before they in turn killed seven hostages, the state news agency reported.(AP Photo/Anis Belghoul)
This Oct. 8, 2012 satellite image provided by DigitalGlobe shows the Amenas Gas Field in Algeria, which is jointly operated by BP and Norway's Statoil and Algeria's Sonatrach. Algerian special forces launched a rescue operation Thursday at the plant in the Sahara Desert and freed foreign hostages held by al-Qaida-linked militants, but estimates for the number of dead varied wildly from four to dozens. (AP Photo/DigitalGlobe)
This Oct. 8, 2012 satellite image provided by DigitalGlobe shows the Amenas Gas Field in Algeria, which is jointly operated by BP and Norway's Statoil and Algeria's Sonatrach. Algerian special forces launched a rescue operation Thursday at the plant in the Sahara Desert and freed foreign hostages held by al-Qaida-linked militants, but estimates for the number of dead varied wildly from four to dozens. (AP Photo/DigitalGlobe)
This Oct. 8, 2012 satellite image provided by DigitalGlobe shows the Amenas Gas Field in Algeria, which is jointly operated by BP and Norway's Statoil and Algeria's Sonatrach. Algerian special forces launched a rescue operation Thursday at the plant in the Sahara Desert and freed foreign hostages held by al-Qaida-linked militants, but estimates for the number of dead varied wildly from four to dozens. (AP Photo/DigitalGlobe)
Algeria hostage
Algeria hostage
Algeria hostage
Algeria hostage
A man reads a newspaper headlining "Terrorist attack and kidnapping in In Amenas", at a news stand in Algiers, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. Algerian forces raided a remote Sahara gas plant on Thursday in an attempt to free dozens of foreign hostages held by militants with ties to Mali’s rebel Islamists, diplomats and an Algerian security official said. Information on the Algerian assault in the remote area was wildly varying _ Islamic militants claimed that 35 hostages and 15 militants died in a strafing by Algerian helicopters, while Algeria’s official news service claimed hundreds of local workers and half the foreigners were rescued. (AP Photo/Ouahab Hebbat)
A man reads a newspaper headlining "Terrorist attack and kidnapping in In Amenas", at a news stand in Algiers, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. Algerian forces raided a remote Sahara gas plant on Thursday in an attempt to free dozens of foreign hostages held by militants with ties to Mali’s rebel Islamists, diplomats and an Algerian security official said. Information on the Algerian assault in the remote area was wildly varying _ Islamic militants claimed that 35 hostages and 15 militants died in a strafing by Algerian helicopters, while Algeria’s official news service claimed hundreds of local workers and half the foreigners were rescued. (AP Photo/Ouahab Hebbat)
A man reads a newspaper headlining "Terrorist attack and kidnapping in In Amenas", at a news stand in Algiers, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. Algerian forces raided a remote Sahara gas plant on Thursday in an attempt to free dozens of foreign hostages held by militants with ties to Mali’s rebel Islamists, diplomats and an Algerian security official said. Information on the Algerian assault in the remote area was wildly varying _ Islamic militants claimed that 35 hostages and 15 militants died in a strafing by Algerian helicopters, while Algeria’s official news service claimed hundreds of local workers and half the foreigners were rescued. (AP Photo/Ouahab Hebbat)
Statoil's CEO Helge Lund, arrives to meet at the centre for relatives to the hostages in Algeria, which has been established near the airport, in Bergen, Norway, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. Algerian forces launched a military assault Thursday at a natural gas plant in the Sahara Desert, trying to free dozens of foreign hostages held by militants who have ties to Mali's rebel Islamists, diplomats and an Algerian security official said. Yet information on the Algerian operation varied wildly and the conflicting reports that emerged from the remote area were impossible to verify independently (AP Photo/Hakon Mosvold /NTB Scanpix) NORWAY OUT
Statoil's CEO Helge Lund, arrives to meet at the centre for relatives to the hostages in Algeria, which has been established near the airport, in Bergen, Norway, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. Algerian forces launched a military assault Thursday at a natural gas plant in the Sahara Desert, trying to free dozens of foreign hostages held by militants who have ties to Mali's rebel Islamists, diplomats and an Algerian security official said. Yet information on the Algerian operation varied wildly and the conflicting reports that emerged from the remote area were impossible to verify independently (AP Photo/Hakon Mosvold /NTB Scanpix) NORWAY OUT
Statoil's CEO Helge Lund, arrives to meet at the centre for relatives to the hostages in Algeria, which has been established near the airport, in Bergen, Norway, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. Algerian forces launched a military assault Thursday at a natural gas plant in the Sahara Desert, trying to free dozens of foreign hostages held by militants who have ties to Mali's rebel Islamists, diplomats and an Algerian security official said. Yet information on the Algerian operation varied wildly and the conflicting reports that emerged from the remote area were impossible to verify independently (AP Photo/Hakon Mosvold /NTB Scanpix) NORWAY OUT
FILE - This is a April 19, 2005 fiel photo released by Statoil via NTB scanpix, shows the Ain Amenas gas field in Algeria, where Islamist militants raided and took hostages Wednesday Jan. 16, 2013. British Prime Minister David Cameron said Algerian forces are “still pursuing terrorists” and looking for hostages at an oil installation in the Sahara desert. Cameron told lawmakers Friday Jan. 18, 2013 that Algerian troops were still engaged in an operation to secure a “large and complex site.” (AP Photo/Kjetil Alsvik, Statoil via NTB scanpix, File) NORWAY OUT
FILE - This is a April 19, 2005 fiel photo released by Statoil via NTB scanpix, shows the Ain Amenas gas field in Algeria, where Islamist militants raided and took hostages Wednesday Jan. 16, 2013. British Prime Minister David Cameron said Algerian forces are “still pursuing terrorists” and looking for hostages at an oil installation in the Sahara desert. Cameron told lawmakers Friday Jan. 18, 2013 that Algerian troops were still engaged in an operation to secure a “large and complex site.” (AP Photo/Kjetil Alsvik, Statoil via NTB scanpix, File) NORWAY OUT
FILE - This is a April 19, 2005 fiel photo released by Statoil via NTB scanpix, shows the Ain Amenas gas field in Algeria, where Islamist militants raided and took hostages Wednesday Jan. 16, 2013. British Prime Minister David Cameron said Algerian forces are “still pursuing terrorists” and looking for hostages at an oil installation in the Sahara desert. Cameron told lawmakers Friday Jan. 18, 2013 that Algerian troops were still engaged in an operation to secure a “large and complex site.” (AP Photo/Kjetil Alsvik, Statoil via NTB scanpix, File) NORWAY OUT

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