‘25 bodies found at gas field’
- Mad rush, chaos as Arvind Kejriwal takes local train to woo 'aam aadmi' in Mumbai
- SC defers hearing on Sahara's plea on releasing Subrata Roy
- Presidential delay in mercy petitions: SC won't reconsider verdict
- Lalu loyalist-turned rebel Ram Kripal Yadav joins BJP
- IAF aircraft on standby for missing Malaysian Airlines search ops
Mokhtar Belmokhtar: Claims responsibility on behalf of al-qaeda in video: Sahara media
Algeria Sunday said it expected heavy hostage casualties after its troops ended a desert siege, but Western governments warned against criticising tactics used by their vital ally in the struggle with Islamists across the Sahara.
An Algerian minister acknowledged the death toll would rise, and private TV station Ennahar reported 25 bodies had been found by bomb squads scouring the gas plant near Ain Amenas after forces staged a final assault against the Islamist hostage-takers Saturday. The government said 32 militants were killed and five were reported to have been captured alive.
Jihad 'Prince' Mokhtar Belmokhtar claimed responsibility for the standoff on behalf of al-Qaeda in a video, Mauritanian website Sahara Media reported. He said he was ready to negotiate with Algeria and Western countries if they stopped bombing North Mali.
Earlier Sunday, Algeria's chief government spokesman said the militants came from six countries and were armed to cause maximum destruction. Sonatrach, the Algerian state oil company running the site along with BP and Norway's Statoil, said the entire refinery had been mined.
British PM David Cameron Sunday said three Britons were killed and another three believed dead.
The US State Department issued a travel warning Saturday night for Americans in or traveling to Algeria, citing credible threats of kidnapping of Western nationals. The department also authorized the departure of staff members' families from Algeria.
Immediately after the assault, French President Francois Hollande backed Algeria's tough tactics, saying they were "the most adapted response to the crisis".
A total of 685 Algerian and 107 foreigner workers were freed during the standoff, the ministry said.
Meanwhile, Algerian oil minister said operations at the Tiguentourine plant will resume within two days.
- Rs 1.28 lakh looted at gunpoint
- Venkaiah Naidu sure of BJP crossing ‘magic figure’ in south India
- AAP candidates truly ‘aam aadmi’: Prithvi Reddy
- Bangalore fund-raiser: Dine with Arvind Kejriwal for Rs 20,000
- AAP sounds Gul Panag about Lok Sabha poll, father says decision soon
- The real high and low: Drunk cop creates ruckus in court, held