News / USA

Panetta: US Will Work With Africans to Fight al-Qaida

US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta speaks during a news conference with his British counterpart, Philip Hammond (L), in London on January 19, 2013.
US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta speaks during a news conference with his British counterpart, Philip Hammond (L), in London on January 19, 2013.
Al Pessin
U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says the United States will continue to work with Algeria and other African countries to fight terrorists. The secretary spoke in London after Algerian troops had launched a second attack against gunmen holding hostages at a natural gas facility, resulting in additional deaths.

Information from Algeria was sketchy when Secretary Panetta and his British counterpart Phillip Hammond spoke to reporters Saturday afternoon. But Panetta said the best way to fight al-Qaida groups like the one in Algeria is to help local governments maintain control of their territory and deal with terrorist attacks when they happen.
“I think it's important that as we face this enemy we have to adapt the best efforts to be able to ensure that we do this effectively, and that involves working with these countries in the region to work with us, to develop the capability of identifying where they're located and the ability to conduct operations against al-Qaida,” he said.
Anti-terrorist forces can keep al-Qaida on the run, Panetta said, but no one should be complacent about the effort. He said the United States will not tolerate attacks on its territory, citizens or interests.
“Since 9-11, we've made very clear that nobody is going to attack the United States of America and get away with it.”
Panetta repeated that the United States will go after al-Qaida wherever it tries to hide.
Secretary Hammond appeared to acknowledge that western countries were not entirely pleased with the Algerian decision to attack the compound where the hostages were held, a move that resulted in several hostage deaths. But he praised Algeria's commitment to fight terrorism.
“The nature of collaboration in confronting a global threat is that we work with people sometimes who do things somewhat differently, slightly differently, from the way we would do them ourselves,” Hammond said.

The two men also spoke about the situation in Mali. Secretary Panetta disputed a reporter's suggestion that the United States is not providing much concrete assistance to French forces that moved into the country a week ago to fight another al-Qaida affiliate.
“We are, in fact, providing assistance to the French," he said. "We provided intelligence information to them to assist them in that situation. We are providing an airlift to try to assist them to be able to project more of their force into the area.”
And Panetta said there are talks about further assistance, as well as more involvement by West African forces. But he and Secretary Hammond said there is no plan to deploy American or British combat forces to the region.

You May Like

Afghanistan, Pakistan Leaders to Hold Icebreaking Talks in Paris

Two sides are expected to discuss ways to ease bilateral tensions and jointly work for resumption of stalled peace talks between Afghan government and Taliban officials

Corruption Busting Is Her Game

South African activist is building 'international online community of thousands of corruption fighters'

Former SAF Businessman Gives Books, Love of Reading to Students

Steve Tsakaris now involved in nonprofit Read to Rise, which distributes books in Soweto, encourages lower-grade primary school students to read

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: Mr Panetta
January 21, 2013 11:04 AM
Please sir, dont loose sight of the plight of those vulnerable people in that Southern Africa state - you know that country,
of that Iam sure.

by: Frank Frank
January 20, 2013 5:39 PM
But the Bombs "HAVE DROPPED!!!", and the country is "UNDER ATTACK"- the only thing missing being the Flames that we're used to seeing that traditionally came with War. This is the only reason that we "almost" believe that we are not at War. PROTECT US!!!!

by: @Mustafa from: Egypt
January 19, 2013 3:51 PM
hey Panetta, you helped inaugurate Al Quaeda in Egypt. Egypt, today, is the first officially recognized Al Quaeda State. America seem to be really stupid... Bush wanted "free elections" in Gaza - you got Hamas... Obama wanted "free elections" in Egypt - you got Muslim Brotherhood... "free elections" in Iraq - you got the Moqtada al-Sadr mahdi army allied to Iran!!! America is beginning to be the agents of instability in the world. I am Egyptian, I love my country, and i tell you America, before you do anything else - talk to the Israelies!!! the world is beginning to think that you couldn't be that stupid, and you actually aiding and abetting this Islamic spread of terrorist depravity...
In Response

by: ali baba from: new york
January 21, 2013 12:37 PM

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Belgium-Germany Border Remains Porous, Even As Manhunt For Paris Attacker Continuesi
Ayesha Tanzeem
November 25, 2015 10:46 PM
One of the suspected gunmen in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, evaded law enforcement, made his way to Belgium, and is now believed to have fled to Germany. VOA correspondent Ayesha Tanzeem makes the journey across the border from Belgium into Germany to see how porous the borders really are.

Video Belgium-Germany Border Remains Porous, Even As Manhunt For Paris Attacker Continues

One of the suspected gunmen in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, evaded law enforcement, made his way to Belgium, and is now believed to have fled to Germany. VOA correspondent Ayesha Tanzeem makes the journey across the border from Belgium into Germany to see how porous the borders really are.

Video Islamic State Unfazed by Losses in Iraq, Syria

Progress in the U.S.-led effort to beat Islamic State on its home turf in Iraq and Syria has led some to speculate the terror group may be growing desperate. But counterterror officials say that is not the case, and warn the recent spate of terror attacks is merely part of the group’s evolution. VOA National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more.

Video Taiwan Looks for Role in South China Sea Dispute

The Taiwanese government is one of several that claims territory in the hotly contested South China Sea, but Taipei has long been sidelined in the dispute, overshadowed by China. Now, as the Philippines challenges Beijing’s claims in an international court at The Hague, Taipei is looking to publicly assert its claims. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.

Video Syrian Refugees in US Express Concern for Those Left Behind

Syrian immigrants in the United States are concerned about the negative tide of public opinion and the politicians who want to block a U.S. plan to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees. Zlatica Hoke reports many Americans are fighting to dispel suspicions linking refugees to terrorists.

Video After Paris Attacks, France Steps Up Fight Against IS

The November 13 Paris attacks have drawn increased attention to Syria, where many of the suspected perpetrators are said to have received training. French President Francois Hollande is working to build a broad international coalition to defeat Islamic State in Syria and in Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video US, Cambodian Navies Pair Up in Gulf of Thailand

The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its newest and most advanced ships to Cambodia to conduct joint training drills in the Gulf of Thailand. Riding hull-to-hull with Cambodian ships, the seamen of the USS Fort Worth are executing joint-training drills that will help build relations in Southeast Asia. David Boyle reports for VOA from Preah Sihanouk province.

Video Americans Sharpen Focus on Terrorism

Washington will be quieter than usual this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday, even as Americans across the nation register heightened concerns over possible terrorist threats. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports new polling data from ABC News and the Washington Post newspaper show an electorate increasingly focused on security issues after the deadly Islamic State attacks in Paris.

Video World Leaders Head to Paris for Climate Deal

Heads of state from nearly 80 countries are heading to Paris (November 30-December 11) to craft a global climate change agreement. The new accord will replace the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change that expired in 2012.

Video Uncertain Future for Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Illinois

For the trickle of Syrian refugees finding new homes in the Midwest city of Chicago, the call to end resettlement in many U.S. states is adding another dimension to their long journey fleeing war. Organizations working to help them integrate say the backlash since the Paris attacks is both harming and helping their efforts to provide refugees sanctuary. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

Video Creating Physical Virtual Reality With Tiny Drones

As many computer gamers know, virtual reality is a three-dimensional picture, projected inside special googles. It can fool your brain into thinking the computer world is the real world. But If you try to touch it, it’s not there. Now Canadian researchers say it may be possible to create a physical virtual reality using tiny drones. VOA’s George Putic reports.

Video New American Indian Village Takes Visitors Back in Time

There is precious little opportunity to experience what life was like in the United States before its colonization by European settlers. Now, an American Indian village built in a park outside Washington is taking visitors back in time to experience the way of life of America's indigenous people. Carol Pearson narrates this report from VOA's June Soh.

Video Even With Hometown Liberated, Yazidi Refugees Fear Return

While the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar has been liberated from Islamic State forces, it's not clear whether Yazidi residents who fled the militants will now return home. VOA’s Mahmut Bozarslan talked with Yazidis, a religious and ethnic minority, at a Turkish refugee camp in Diyarbakır. Robert Raffaele narrates his report.

Video Nairobi Tailors Make Pope Francis’ Vestments

To ensure the pope is properly attired during his visit, the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops asked the Dolly Craft Sewing Project in the Nairobi slum of Kangemi to make the pope's vestments, the garments he will wear during the various ceremonies. Jill Craig reports.

Video Cross-Border Terrorism Puts Europe’s Passport-Free Travel in Doubt

The fallout from the Islamic State terror attacks in Paris has put the future of Europe’s passport-free travel area, known as the "Schengen Zone," in doubt. Several of the perpetrators were known to intelligence agencies, but were not intercepted. Henry Ridgwell reports from London European ministers are to hold an emergency meeting Friday in Brussels to look at ways of improving security.

Video El Niño Brings Unexpected Fish From Mexico to California

Fish in an unexpected spectrum of sizes, shapes and colors are moving north, through El Niño's warm currents from Mexican waters to the Pacific Ocean off California’s coast. El Nino is the periodic warming of the eastern and central Pacific Ocean. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this phenomenon thrills scientists and gives anglers the chance of a once-in-a-lifetime big catch. Faith Lapidus narrates.

Video Terrorism in Many Forms Continues to Plague Africa

While the world's attention is on Paris in the wake of Friday night's deadly attacks, terrorism from various sides remains a looming threat in many African countries. Nigerian cities have been targeted this week by attacks many believe were staged by the violent Islamist group Boko Haram. In addition, residents in many regions are forced to flee their homes as they are terrorized by armed militias. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Study: Underage Marriage Rate Higher for Females in Pakistan

While attitudes about the societal role of females in Pakistan are evolving, research by child advocacy group Plan International suggests that underage marriage of girls remains a particularly big issue in the country. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports how such marriages leads to further social problems.

VOA Blogs