January 18, 2013 Militants seized hostages earlier this week at a gas plant in eastern Algeria. A military raid freed some and reportedly caused the deaths of others. American officials believe 10 Americans were there when the plant was attacked. Some Americans reportedly escaped.
January 17, 2013 A mass kidnapping in Algeria and an Islamist rebellion in Mali underscore Western concerns that the regional security situation is deteriorating. Both France and the U.S. have compelling interests in propping up Mali's fragile government against extremists, but stabilizing the country could prove a difficult task.
January 17, 2013 Events are happening quickly at the oil field where Islamist militants have been holding a large group of hostages, apparently including some Americans. The kidnappers are retaliating for French military action against militants in neighboring Mali.
January 16, 2013 The State Department said Americans are reported to be among the hostages taken by militants at an Algerian gas plant. The total number of hostages is unclear, as are the number of Americans. The attack is seen as retaliation against France's intervention against Islamists in neighboring Mali.
January 16, 2013 After five days of airstrikes aimed at Islamist militants, French troops are engaged in their first ground operation in Mali, according to several news outlets. The rebels, who had vowed to retaliate, may have done so by grabbing hostages at an oil field in neighboring Algeria.