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Cameron says three Britons confirmed dead in Algeria

posted 20 Jan 2013, 05:23 by Sam Mbale   [ updated 20 Jan 2013, 05:24 ]

British Prime Minister David Cameron delivers a televised statement in which he says he will deal with the North African militant threat with an iron fist.

 LONDON, ENGLAND, UK (JANUARY 20, 2013) (UK POOL) -  Prime Minister David Cameron said on Sunday (January 20) that three British nationals were confirmed dead after a hostage crisis at a gas plant in Algeria and a further three were feared dead.

"Tragically we now know that three British nationals have been killed and a further three are believed to be dead and also a further British resident is also believed to be dead," Cameron said in a televised statement.

Cameron said that militancy in North Africa would be handled with an iron fist and called for a united global effort to crush the threat posed by al Qaeda-linked groups.

"It will require a response that is about years, even decades, rather than months, and it requires a response that is patient and painstaking and tough, but also intelligent, but above all has an absolutely iron resolve and that is what we will deliver over these coming years," he said.

"It will also require countries to work together and I will use our chairmanship of the G8 this year to make sure this issue is right at the top of the agenda worldwide."

Algeria's government said on Sunday the death toll from the gas plant attacked in the Sahara desert would rise from the 23 hostages initially thought.

The previous death toll given by Algeria's Interior Ministry on Saturday (January 19) was 23 hostages and 32 militants killed during the assault launched by Algerian special forces to end the crisis, with 107 foreign hostages and 685 Algerian hostages freed.