MOSCOW, January 17 (Itar-Tass) – No Russian citizens were wounded in a terrorist act in Algeria, the Russian Foreign Ministry confirmed on Thursday.
“On January 16, the group of extremists delivered an armed attack on foreign oil workers, who were on the way to the airport In Amenas in the eastern Algerian province Illizi escorted by the Algerian security forces,” the Russian ministry stated. “According to available preliminary reports, rebuffed by the Algerian military, the attackers entrenched at the oil facility not far from the airport, taking hostage a large number of foreign citizens, including the US citizens, Frenchmen, Britons, Norwegians and Japanese,” the ministry noted.
“In the shootout two people, including a Briton, were killed, six people were injured. No Russians were injured or taken hostage,” the Russian Foreign Ministry stated.
“The Al Qaeda branch in the Islamic Maghreb states assumed responsibility for the terrorist attack, as the latter is reported to be involved in major terrorist acts in Algeria,” the ministry added.
“Russia condemns strongly this new criminal act against Algerian and foreign citizens. We confirm our solidarity with friendly Algeria in the country’s efforts to ward off the terrorism threat. We believe that the actions of the extremists, who frequently use religious slogans as a smear, cannot be justified. These terrorist raids, no matter where they are committed – in Sahel, North Africa or the Middle East – and no matter what motives are voiced to be behind them, are terrorist acts, in the struggle with which the international community should take a common uncompromising position,” the Russian Foreign Ministry reported.