Slater and Gordon lawyers and their clients will be featured in a long-awaited documentary that reveals the real story of what happened to the Brits held hostage by Al Qaeda at the In Amenas gas plant in Algeria earlier this year.
Siege in the Sahara, to be shown on Channel 4 on Tuesday 3rd September at 10pm, includes exclusive interviews with survivors and the families of some of those who died, many of whom are telling the full story of the incident for the first time.
The attack took place in January this year and left over 37 foreign hostages dead, including seven from Britain.
The gas field is operated by the Algerian state oil company Sonatrach with the British firm BP and the Norwegian firm Statoil.
As the events unfolded over four days in the full glare of the world’s media, Algerian special forces and helicopter gunships attacked the site in an effort to end the crisis.
The film raises many unanswered questions, such as how did a convoy of terrorists manage to travel undetected across hundreds of miles of desert and gain control of one of Algeria’s most important and valuable gas facilities? What was the gas plant’s emergency preparedness and security arrangements?
Trevor Stirling, a former personal injury specialist at Slater and Gordon Lawyers was interviewed during the documentary, representing 35 individuals including survivors and family members of those who died during the attack while working as contractors for BP.
Trevor Sterling said, “It’s never been more important to examine the fateful events in Algeria in January which left over 37 foreign hostages dead, including seven from Britain.
“This is an important documentary and one that raises vital questions about who was responsible for the security of the workers who tragically died.
“I’m calling on British firm BP, who was partly responsible for running the oil field, to come forward and clarify their role in this tragedy and help the families of the victims move towards some kind of closure.
“The fact is that contractors to BP perceived themselves as working for BP and believed in doing so they would be safe on site. BP has a moral obligation to carry out an open and transparent investigation into what happened.”
Among the interviewees featured in the documentary is Lorraine Barlow, widow of contractor Garry Barlow who died in the attack. She says in the programme, “A lot of what went wrong at In Amenas would seem to be based around the lack of any security. The only way we will know what [the] security procedures are is if BP has an open and complete investigation into the security process.”
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