Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

#TECH 24

'Life as a cyborg' with Angel Giuffria

Read more

REPORTERS

Video: Can love finally beat the caste system in Senegal?

Read more

REVISITED

Video: 40 years after his death, Franco's ghost still haunts Spain

Read more

ENCORE!

Saimir Pirgu, a leading tenor mentored by Pavarotti and Domingo

Read more

#THE 51%

Feminist icons and young female Democrats clash over Hillary Clinton

Read more

YOU ARE HERE

The Perche region: The art of peasantry

Read more

FOCUS

Forbidden love in Senegal: Khady and Massamba's caste struggle

Read more

FRENCH CONNECTIONS

The 'Académie française': Guard dog of the French language

Read more

THE OBSERVERS DIRECT

Tunisia's extra-harsh marijuana law

Read more

Africa

Hostages in Algeria ‘made to wear explosives’

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-01-17

FRANCE 24 has spoken to a French national who says he is one of the 150 hostages at the gas facility in southeast Algeria. The hostage said that they have been forced to wear explosive belts and that this militants are "heavily armed".

FRANCE 24 spoke to one of the hostages at the BP-Statoil-Sonatrach gas plant in eastern Algeria on Wednesday, the site of a deadly pre-dawn raid in which over 150 Algerians and around 40 Western foreigners were taken by Islamist militants.

French government spokeswoman Najat Vallaud-Belkacem said Thursday that Paris could not yet confirm the presence of French nationals among those taken captive, but Socialist MP Bruno Le Roux told French radio there were “surely” some French among the group.

The man, who declined to be identified by name, told FRANCE 24 that there were British, Japanese, Philippine and Malaysian nationals among the hostages.

He said the militants simultaneously stormed the gas plant as well as the workers’ living quarters. “They came in and once there was daylight, grouped us all together.”

He said the attackers were heavily armed and forced several hostages to wear explosives belts. They threatened to blow up the gas field if Algerian forces attempted to enter the site.

FRANCE 24 could not verify if the testimony was made under duress.

Date created : 2013-01-17

  • ALGERIA

    Algerian hostages escape besieged BP facility

    Read more

  • SOMALIA - FRANCE

    Somali militants ‘sentence French hostage to death’

    Read more

  • FRANCE - SOMALIA

    Al Shabaab tweets photos of slain French soldier

    Read more

COMMENT(S)