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Irish citizen among oil-workers kidnapped from BP plant in Algeria

The Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore has called for the immediate release of an Irish citizen reportedly among those kidnapped from a BP oil field in the south of Algeria.

Algeria lies to the north of Mali in north-west Africa.
Algeria lies to the north of Mali in north-west Africa.
Image: Google Maps

AN IRISH CITIZEN is reported to be among a group of oil-workers who have been kidnapped from a BP oil field in Algeria.

The Tánaiste and Foreign Affairs Minister Eamon Gilmore has issued a statement calling for the immediate release of the Irish citizen and all those reported kidnapped and the statement says that consular assistance is being provided to the person’s family.

It is understood that the person is from Northern Ireland and holds an Irish passport.

AFP is reporting that one person has been killed and seven have been wounded after an attack by Islamist militants who came from Mali. Algeria lies to the north of Mali in north-west Africa.

BP said in a statement: “We can confirm that there has been a security incident this morning at the Ain Amenas gas field in the eastern central region of Algeria,” adding that BP had activated its “emergency response system”.

Reuters is reporting that five Japanese nationals and a French citizen have been kidnapped form the oil field in the south of the country but Associated Press says that the kidnapping involved at least eight foreigners, including English, Norwegian and Japanese nationals.

Algeria has allowed France to use its airspace during its current military intervention in the region.

“The Government stands ready to use all the resources available to us to ensure that our citizen is released as soon as possible,” the Tánaiste said in a statement, adding “I would ask that the family be allowed privacy at this difficult time.”

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Hugh O'Connell

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