ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) — A Mauritanian news outlet is quoting Islamist militants as saying that Algerian helicopters have strafed the natural gas complex where they are holding foreign hostages, wounding at least two of them.
The spokesman for the militant group told the Nouakchott Information Agency that two Japanese hostages were injured by the military helicopter fire.
He reiterated the militants' warning that they would kill the remaining hostages if Algerian forces attempted to liberate them.
Al-Qaida-linked militants stormed an Algerian natural gas complex in the Sahara Desert on Wednesday, seizing up to 41 foreign hostages. Algerian forces have surrounded the militants at the plant since then, and have rejected demands for safe passage.