An unspecified number of hostages escaped from Islamist militants in southern Algeria, the BBC reported Jan. 17, citing Algerian security officials. One official told AP that at least 20 foreigners, including Americans and Europeans, had escaped. Algeria’s private Ennahar TV said 15 foreigners escaped, while another security source told Reuters the total was 25
The Algerian army now controls the natural gas processing facility that had been seized by militants, an army official said Jan. 17, TSA reported. As the intervention in Mali continues, militants could flow across the Algerian-Malian border in ever increasing numbers, raising the likelihood of attacks against Westerners and energy infrastructure in the country.