ALGIERS Jan 17 Algeria's government spokesman
confirmed some hostages were killed in a continuing military
operation at a desert gas plant on Thursday but said troops had
been forced to act to free them after talks with their captors
In the first official comments by the government on the
day's events, Communication Minister Mohamed Said was quoted as
telling state news agency APS that many militants had been
killed and that efforts to free foreign hostages were going on.
He acknowledged there had been "several deaths and injuries"
among the hostages, however.