Coffee House

Breaking: Cameron postpones Europe speech

17 January 2013

6:37 PM

17 January 2013

6:37 PM

David Cameron has postponed his speech on the European Union because of the hostage situation in Algeria where a standoff has been taking place in a gas plant in the Sahara Desert. There are conflicting reports, but it seems about 300 Algerian and 40 international hostages were taken and several have been killed in a rescue attempt. The PM has suggested that worse news will follow saying:-

‘We should be prepared for the possibility of further bad news in this very dangerous fluid situation.’

No10 said earlier that Cameron had not been informed about the Algerian rescue attempt before it began and has told his Algerian counterpart that he wishes he had been “contacted in advance”. The Japanese government has asked the Algerians to desist. The siege appears to have been led by an al-Qaeda splinter group, claiming to have come from Mali, whose leader is reported to have been killed – but no details have been confirmed.

The gas plant is in the town of In Amenas, some 700 miles from the Malian border and is a joint venture between BP, Norway’s Statoil and the Algerian government. Some analysts speculate that an attack in such an unlikely location (it’s closer to Libya than Mali) would be have been pre-planned and may indicated a strategy of replying to the French attack by moving on Western interests in countries such as Libya, Nigeria and Morocco.

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We will bring you more details as they emerge.

Meanwhile, here are the reactions from Westminster:-

 

 

More to follow…

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Show comments
  • http://twitter.com/TheRedBladder The Red Bladder

    When he finally does get round to making his long expected and eagerly awaited address to Europe it may well turn out to be a bit of an anticlimax. Whoever could have anticipated that from David Cameron?

  • David Barnett

    First things first.

  • http://www.facebook.com/steven.efstathiou Steven Efstathiou

    Meanwhile.. ‘David Cameron’s long-awaited speech on the European Union – postponed yet again last night – will be one of his finest, according to those who have read the draft.’ Cheers Fraser.
    You couldn’t make it up (well, actually you did).

  • Daniel Maris

    These sorts of incidents are inevitable when we depend on Middle Eastern hydrocarbons for our energy supply.

    • BuBBleBus

      Goddamnit maris get those windmills aturning. Its freezing tonight and hardly a breath of wind.

      • Daniel Maris

        I am merely pointing out that there are some parts of the world where it would be much better if we had absolutely no involvement whatsoever. But if we do get involved then we can hardly be surprised that our fellow citizens become victims of terrorism.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

      Should cut a deal with China and occupy these regions…..simply moving the population out to sea. Why customers tolerate such shoddy service from hydrocarbon suppliers is unclear – China takes half the Middle East Oil and could easilyu send 50 million to live in Iran

      • Fergus Pickering

        Good scheme 50 million Chinese instead of 50 million muslims. But who gets the 50 million muslims eh?

  • davey12

    Actually he is doing the right thing.

    Tiocfaidh ár lá

  • anyfool

    We now have Hague returning from Australia, why what can he do, a possiblity of more dead hostages very serious for the families concerned, but to cause this much disruption to the government programme, surely it takes more than is apparent at the moment to cause this sort of funk.

  • 2trueblue

    What would the reaction have been if Cameron had headed out to give his speech?

    • Daniel Maris

      Is the whole of government supposed to grind to a halt? The only way to defeat terrorism is to carry on as normal.

      • 2trueblue

        The majority of people are more concerned about British deaths in Algeria than a speech in the EU, however important. He had no choice.

        • HooksLaw

          Agreed. Plus there are some important confrontations needed with the Algerian govt.
          But surely Mr 2trueblue you have cottoned on to the notion that on here you criticise Cameron for getting up kin the morning and his choice of tie. Even if against a background of tragic British deaths.

          Events like this assist me in my voiw that we would have been better concentrating our armed forces effort in expanding and improving our Special Forces and not on giant aircraft carriers.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

            Algerians aren’t daft. They have seen how the West dealt with Mubarak and Ghadaffi. Dealing with the West is a death sentence – best to take care of yourselves. The French are the last people the Algerians want to listen to. Hooks Law writes as a Neo-Colonialist telling Algerians what the Big White Chief wants them to do.

            • HooksLaw

              Dumb is a dumb does. Your ramblings are pointless. Neo colonialist? What a dipstick you are.

              • Daniel Maris

                The neo colonialist jibe is perfectly apposite. We don’t rule Algeria, and neither do the French. What business to we have telling them how to deal with a hostage crisis? They may reasonably conclude that the way we deal with hostage crises simply encourages more hostage taking and more deaths in the long run. Who’s to say they are wrong?

              • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

                Ramp it up a bit HooksLaw you are simply too charming….let it all out. Stop taking the pills and have a complete rant…..the headaches will go away if you stop the meds…..go on….

            • Daniel Maris

              I agree. I have no complaint with the Algerians – from bitter experience – knowing they are dealing with a savage, implacable enemy who must be met with an immediate lethal response.

            • Fergus Pickering

              The Algerians appear to have been useless, which is no surprise at all. After all, they are muslims.

          • 2trueblue

            I have no idea what you are talking about in your 2nd paragraph. Have never remarked on his attire.

            • HooksLaw

              I am sure you haven’t. My phraseology may have confused you. Perhaps I should have written ‘…on here it’s de rigueur to criticise…’

              • 2trueblue

                Saying nothing is saying nothing.

          • Daniel Maris

            Why? The record of our Special Forces is not that brilliant is it? Plenty of failures and botched operations. It’s just the botches are never publicised.

            I think Trident and aircraft carriers are probably a bit OTT for our needs. We should be focussing on the development of robotic warfare which will be effective in the field and also boost our export earnings.

            The main advantage of the Islamists as they never cease telling us is that they love death more than life…whereas we value life above death. But robots are perfectly happy to die for their masters. That’s where we should be putting our money. Drones have already shown themselves incredibly effective in warfare. We should now be thinking in terms of developing mini-drones that can win on the battlefield, down on the ground.

            • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

              Trident is fine just a pity we don’t own the warheads. How do you intend to use drones Daniel if you don’t own satellites ? Following your logic we should be sterilising the population in these trouble-spots and culling male births

              • Fergus Pickering

                Sounds good to me. How do we start?

        • Daniel Maris

          It’s the responsibility of political leaders to lead.

          • 2trueblue

            Preferably from the home base, with access to what he needs.

  • In2minds

    European adventure stops European speech!

  • http://www.facebook.com/steven.efstathiou Steven Efstathiou

    Reminds me of the man who couldn’t walk and chew gum at the same…

    • HooksLaw

      No – thats you.

      • http://www.facebook.com/steven.efstathiou Steven Efstathiou

        Oh dear, are you the chap that keeps following me about and mumbling to himself?

        • HooksLaw

          I suggest you get The Spectator to delete the reply button to your posts.
          That’s very advisable when you talk as much pointless rubbish as you do (like your post below for starters).

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

    “We should be prepared for the possibility of further bad news in this
    very dangerous fluid situation.”………and year upon year of it. These guys have so little to lose and so much time on their hands they will tie up the French and the British for decades……all those happy TA Soldiers off to Mali when Cameron gives in to Hollande……it’ll be like Orwell’s 1984 with perpetual war and noone quite clear what is going on

    • HooksLaw

      You are sick. Mali is France’s problem. Strange though that you pretend our armed forces are being emasculated yet we are the ones lending transports to France so they can deploy their troops.
      Fundamentally you are clueless

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

        “lending” LEASED C-17 transports from the USA because Europe cannot sort out its Transport Plane

        • HooksLaw

          If you take the USA F35 as one example – explain how many years late and over cost it is.

          As the RAF say themselves … ‘In 2004 the MoD announced the intention to buy the current fleet of (C17) aircraft at the conclusion of the current lease arrangement in 2008 and to purchase two additional aircraft.’

          Those two aircraft have been purchased. So we can agree now can we, that despite our commitment to Afghanistan we still have a better heavy lift capability than France?

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

            The French were building an A400M through EADS but noone could agree on costs in Britain and Germany. Why do I care about the F-35 – you are the only person in this blog that has ever hyped it. It is an absurd joke. As for lifting ECOWAS troops into Mali – it is a joke. Nigeria and the rest simply want Western equipment. This mess was caused by US training of Mali troops where whole contingents absconded NOrth with their kit and training and are now fighting the 2000 French troops.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

            France has 50 Transall aircraft and the Germans have 60. If they needed bigger aircraft they could use AN124s from Ukraine as Britain does in Afghanistan. This is simply tokenism to show Britain (and possibly Germany) actually care……but why should we feet Saudi and Qatari sponsored Islamists – we don’t in Syria and didn’t in Libya?

            • realfish

              They have used the AN’s

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004981542519 Tom Tom

        It is to deploy ECOWAS troops. French troops and 30 tanks are already there

  • williamblakesghost

    Lets wait and see what happens. I have a hunch as to why this might be and if I’m right Cameron shouldn’t be gallavanting about or making speeches about anything.

    • David Ossitt

      Come on ghost of William Blake do not be coy, please tell us your hunch.

    • BuBBleBus

      So cam was going to tell the frogs to bugger off. But now wants them to help rescue our boys BP.

      • HooksLaw

        ‘Our boys’ are now either dead or rescued. Keep the jokes coming.

    • telemachus

      Correct
      Cameron
      Along with Obama and Hollande are delighted that the Algerians have prevented an embarrassing political standoff

  • http://www.facebook.com/steven.efstathiou Steven Efstathiou

    Frit.

    • realfish

      Sick

  • http://twitter.com/tomdaylight tomdaylight

    This “tantric” speech is the tomorrow that never comes.

    • telemachus

      But my friend tomorrow will come and whatever he says Ukip will clean up and in so doing deliver back to us reasonable government in 2015

      • http://twitter.com/tomdaylight tomdaylight

        The sort of “reasonable government” that poured other people’s money down the drain and pretended it wasn’t a problem, you mean?

  • http://twitter.com/Tory_lee29 lee taylor

    Isabel it’s been postponed not cancelled. Learn the difference .

    • David Lindsay

      Let’s just see what the difference turns out to be.

      • MirthaTidville

        Indeed David, indeed

        • David Lindsay

          Meanwhile, after this morning’s interview, it is Ed Miliband who remains open to a straight In-Out referendum while having made concrete proposals to repatriate industrial and regional policy.

          • 2trueblue

            13yrs. with a promise of a referendum and did we get it from the Blair/Brown/Balls/Millipede government? Blair gave away half the rebate that Thatcher negotiated on the promise of the CAP renegotiating the CAP. In the latter days of their reign Brown signed the Lisbon treaty and Darling ran off and gave away yet more money to the EU. So, who cares what he actually says when we have the experience of not getting a referendum whilst it was within their gift to deliver their promise on it?

            • David Lindsay

              There was no promise of a referendum in 1997 unless for some unknown reason Britain had attempted to join the euro, a course of action to which Gordon Brown and John Prescott were implacably opposed (as were David Blunkett, Jack Straw, Margaret Beckett, Robin Cook, et al), unlike their respective predecessors, one of whom is back in the Cabinet, while the other is back at a desk in his old Department.

              Who needs a referendum, anyway? There was no suggestion of one in 1983; indeed, it was specifically ruled out. What is needed is primary legislation. Miliband has already proposed some, and then only as examples, not as a comprehensive list. Cameron has proposed nothing. Literally nothing.

              • HooksLaw

                Don’t lie. Labour promised a referendum on the Lisbon treaty.

                • David Lindsay

                  When? Go on, produce the specific quotation. I bet you can’t.

                • HooksLaw

                  Well we have another ignorant bozo on these pages.
                  Did you actually read Labours 2005 election manifesto?

                  “The new Constitutional Treaty ensures the new Europe can work
                  effectively, and that Britain keeps control of key national interests
                  like foreign policy, taxation, social security and defence.The Treaty
                  sets out what the EU can do and what it cannot. It strengthens the voice
                  of national parliaments and governments in EU affairs. It is a good
                  treaty for Britain and for the new Europe. We will put it to the British people in a referendum and campaign whole-heartedly for a ‘Yes’ vote to keep Britain a leading nation in Europe.”

                • dalai guevara

                  Here we are again.

                  You have the right to vote for the left who will not keep their promises.

                  You have the right to vote for the right who will not keep their promises.

                  You have no right to change the electorial system to finish this nonsense once and for all.

                • HooksLaw

                  The Tories have not broken any promises on the EU treaty. They voted against it in parliament. It was signed before they came to power.
                  The libdems claimed they wanted a referendum but are now complaining that Cameron is about to make a speech about a new relationship with the EU.
                  Labour blatantly broke their promise on a referendum on the EU constitutional treaty.

                • dalai guevara

                  a cast iron response

                • the viceroy’s gin

                  …like your head?

                • Radford_NG

                  Blair promised a referendum on the European CONSTITUTION.The Danes scuppered this;so it was reinvented as the Lisbon TREATY, which was presented as a different thing.

          • HooksLaw

            ha ha ha

          • realfish

            Having rejected one last week

  • MirthaTidville

    Quelle suprise…..mind you we`ve already heard most of the details of this massive non event. Not like we were expecting anything was it?

    • dalai guevara

      Aviation Capacity – lets talk 2015.
      Referendum – let’s talk 2015.

      You know sequels typically come in threes?

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