Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton comments on the taking of U.S. Citizens as hostages in Algeria during a joint press availability with Japanese Foreign Minister Kishida.
I'd like to say a few words about the situation in Algeria. The United States extends our condolences to all the families who have lost loved ones in this brutal assault, and we remain deeply concerned about those who remain in danger. I spoke with the Algerian Prime Minister again this morning to get an update on this very difficult situation and to underscore, again, that the utmost care must be taken to preserve innocent life. We are staying in close touch with our Algerian partners and working with affected nations around the world to end this crisis.
More broadly, however, it is absolutely essential that we broaden and deepen our counterterrorism cooperation going forward with Algeria and all countries of the region. I made clear to the Prime Minister that we stand ready to further enhance the counterterrorism support that we already provide. We have been discussing this with the Algerian leadership both when I traveled to Algeria this past year in October specifically to discuss counterterrorism issues, and again when Deputy Secretary Burns visited as the head of an interagency delegation in November. As the Foreign Minister and I discussed, we must all remain vigilant in our efforts to combat violent extremism and terrorism around the world.
But let's not forget this is an act of terror. The perpetrators are the terrorists. They are the ones who have assaulted this facility, have taken hostage Algerians and others from around the world who were going about their daily business. And it is absolutely essential that while we work to resolve this particular terrible situation, we continue to broaden and deepen our counterterrorism cooperation, something that the Foreign Minister and I discussed at some length. It is not only cooperation with Algeria, it is international cooperation against a common threat.