Advertisement

You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

U.S., UK defense chiefs bemoan hostage deaths

Jan. 19, 2013 - 01:42PM   |   Last Updated: Jan. 19, 2013 - 01:42PM  |  
  • Filed Under

LONDON — The U.S. and British defense chiefs said Saturday the hostage crisis in Algeria ended with more deaths, but that details remained unclear. They blamed the militants who seized the natural gas complex in the Sahara, and not Algeria's government for its rescue operation.

At a joint news conference in London, British Defense Minister Philip Hammond called the loss of life appalling and unacceptable.

"It is the terrorists that bear the sole responsibility," he told reporters.

According to Algeria's state news agency, special forces stormed the complex Saturday in a "final assault" to end the four-day-old hostage crisis. The report didn't say whether any hostages or militants remained alive, and it didn't give the nationalities of the dead.

Hammond didn't criticize Algeria's handling of the attack directly. But he appeared to reference the increased concern from world leaders about the lack of transparency in Algeria's anti-terror operation.

"We're pressing the Algerians for details on the exact situation and the numbers that have been killed and, if any, the numbers rescued," Hammond said.

"Different countries have different approaches to dealing with these things," he said. "But the nature of collaboration in confronting a global threat is that we work with people sometimes who do things somewhat different, slightly differently from the way we do them ourselves."

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said much remains "sketchy" about what happened at the remote Ain Amenas gas field.

"We know that lives have been lost," Panetta said.

"Just as we cannot accept terrorism attacks against our cities, we cannot accept attacks against our citizens and our interests abroad," he added. Panetta said that "those who would wantonly attack our country and our people will have no place to hide."

Panetta was scheduled to return to Washington later Saturday.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan
Rates

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.

This Week's Marine Corps Times

This Week's Marine Corps Times

Left behind
Without security, without citizenship, interpreters are exposed to death squads

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

Classifieds
MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.
   Last Post: TJMAC77SP
        Apr 23, 2014 4:14 PM
   Last Post: Stalwart
        Apr 23, 2014 12:27 PM
San Antonio shooting
(10 replies)
   Last Post: Measure Man
        Apr 22, 2014 3:34 PM
Handbooks

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook