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Twenty-five foreign hostages escape Algeria siege -source

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ALGIERS, Jan 17 (Reuters) - Twenty-five foreign hostages, including two Japanese, escaped from the siege of a gas plant deep in the Algerian desert on Thursday, an Algerian security source said.

A group calling itself the "Batallion of Blood" has said it was holding 41 foreigners inside the gas compound, which it stormed on Wednesday, demanding France halt a military campaign against Islamist rebels in neighbouring Mali.