Algeria and Mali
BREAKING: 34 hostages killed in air strike by Algerian forces
NOUAKCHOTT- Thirty-four hostages and 14 of their al Qaeda-linked kidnappers were killed on Thursday in an air strike by the Algerian armed forces, Mauritania's ANI news agency reported, citing one of the kidnappers holding captives at a desert gas field.
It was not immediately possible to independently verify the information from the agency, which has close contact with the group which has claimed responsibility for the mass kidnapping.
ANI reported that the spokesman for the kidnappers said they would kill the rest of their captives if the army approached.
ANKARA/ISTANBUL Turkey on Wednesday deepened a crackdown on suspected followers of a U.S.-based cleric it blames for a failed coup, dismissing nearly 1,700 military personnel and shutting 131 media outlets, moves that may spark more concern among its Western allies.