Group warns of threat to Libyan oil fields

Jan. 25, 2013 at 6:42 AM

LONDON, Jan. 25 (UPI) -- A group organized to protect journalists said there were "credible" reports that militants may be plotting attacks on oil fields in Libya.

The U.S. and British governments warned citizens of the threat of terrorist attacks in Libya one day after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton testified about Sept. 11, 2012, attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi. That attack left Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans dead.

The International News Safety Institute, a coalition formed to ensure journalist safety, followed up with its warning advising of potential attacks on Libyan oil fields.

"The International News Safety Institute has been alerted by credible sources that terrorist organizations may be planning to attack oil fields in Libya," the organization said.

It added that it's likely any attack would mirror last week's al-Qaida siege on a natural gas facility in eastern Algeria.

A group affiliated with al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb stormed the Ain Amenas facility in response to an Algerian decision to let French forces use its airspace for multilateral operations in Mali.

France responded Jan. 11 to a Malian request to help thwart a rebel advance from the north. Some of those rebel fighters were thought to have fought alongside forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi during the 2011 civil war in Libya.

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