Algeria Hostage Crisis

Alexus Brown, Staff Writer

Traveling to many different countries is fun and can lead to new experiences, but what happens when a simple tourist or visitor gets caught up in a terrorist attack?  On January 17 in Algeria over twenty people were taken against their will, suffering under the hands of local al Qaeda leader Mokhtar Belmonkhtar.  It was a four day nightmare for Americans and other foreigners, with their captors claiming that they strapped the hostages with bombs at a BP gas plant.  This situation all started because the U.S. had previous al-Qaeda hostages, the equivalent of 100, who were comrades to the Algerian terrorists.  The 100 al Qaeda hostages were imprisoned 15 years ago and Mokhtar Belmonkhtar sought for the release of their ‘brothers’.

The Algerian army killed mostly all of the terrorists, but could not stop some of the hostages who were murdered before rescue.  Some hostages managed to escape, but most were killed. On record, 23 of the hostages died and the death toll steadily rises.  Many of the dead bodies found were so disfigured that it was impossible to tell who was a hostage or al-Qaeda member.  Three Americans didn’t survive the attack. President Obama has expressed his condolences about the recent situation and is working to prevent future terrorist plots.