ALGIERS- Minister of the Interior and local Authorities Daho Ould Kablia said Wednesday the terrorist group that carried out the attack against the natural gas complex of Tigantourine, In Amenas (1600-km southeast of Algiers), "came neither from Mali, nor from Libya, or any other neighbouring country."
The Interior Minister, in a statement to Algerian TV, added that the group was composed of about twenty terrorists, who are "from the region," and are believed to have carried out the attack under the the command and orders of terrorist Mokhtar Belmokhtar.
Security forces besieged the area and the terrorist group that was inside the facility, the minister said, rejecting any negotiation with the terrorists that holds hostage a number of foreign nationals, whose number is a "little more than twenty."
Ould Kablia assured that Algeria has taken all necessary measures to cope with the impact of foreign military intervention in Mali.
"Algeria has taken all the steps and measures necessary to cope with the impact of foreign military intervention in Mali," he said.
The terrorist attack, perpetrated Wednesday morning in Tigantourine, province of Illizi (1600-km south of Algiers), left two killed, including a British national, and six wounded, including two foreigners, working in the gas facility, operated by national company Sonatrach and foreign firms (British Petroleum and Statoil).
"A terrorist group, heavily armed, arrived on three vehicles, entered Wednesday at 5 a.m. (Algerian time), Sonatrach’s residential camp in Tigantourine, near In-Amenas, about hundred kilometers from the Algerian-Libyan borders," the ministry of the Interior and Local Authorities said in a statement.
"The attack targeted first a bus which was leaving the residential camp carrying foreigners to In-Amenas airport," the statement added. A foreigner died during the attack, which was foiled by escort units, while six persons (two foreigners, two gendarmes and two security agents) were wounded.
"The terrorist group, after this failed attempt, led to the residential camp, besieging a part of it, then captured an undetermined number of workers, including foreigners,” according to the statement.
"People’s National Army forces (ANP) and security services arrived on the scene and immediately took all measures to secure the region and find a quick solution to this situation, which is closely followed by the authorities," the statement said.
An emergency committee has been formed, chaired by the governor of Illizi, Mohamed Laid Khelfi, and made up of the representatives of security services.
Pumping gas stopped at the gas complex, following the terrorist attack, according to a source close to the facility.