'Fewer than 30' Britons at risk in Algeria: Cameron

AFP , Friday 18 Jan 2013

British PM David Cameron says 'less than 30' citizens remain at risk in Algeria's Islamist-committed hostage crisis

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron, centre, speaking to the House of Commons in London in this image taken from TV where the prime minister spoke about the kidnap situation in Algeria Friday Jan. 18, 2013 (Photo: AP)

Prime Minister David Cameron said Friday Britain believed "significantly" fewer than 30 British citizens were at risk in the hostage-taking crisis at an Algerian gas plant.

"Last night the number of citizens at risk was less than 30. Thankfully we now know that number has been quite significantly reduced," he told parliament in an update on the situation at the In Amenas installation in southern Algeria.

Cameron said he could not give any further information on the number of Britons involved because the Algerian military operation at the plant was "ongoing", but he hoped it would be resolved soon.

He said the Islamist gunmen first attacked two buses on route to the airfield at the remote desert complex on Wednesday, killing two men including a British man.

They then attacked the residential compound at the plant before turning their attention to the gas facility itself.

He confirmed that he was not informed in advance of the assault on the plant.

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