State Department: All Americans accounted for in Algeria attack

U.S. officials don’t have any reason to believe other Americans are unaccounted for in an Algeria terrorist attack in which three U.S. citizens were among dozens who died, a State Department spokeswoman said Tuesday.

Seven Americans survived the attack, spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said at a briefing in Washington that was carried on the Internet.

She said the remains of the three American workers who were killed have been removed from the site.  Nuland declined to say how they died.

Two of the dead Americans were from the Houston area–Victor Lovelady of Houston and Frederick Buttaccio of Katy. Also killed was Gordon Lee Rowan of Sumpter, Ore.

Read more: Overseas dangers don’t deter oil workers

Nuland said the U.S. government continues to seek information from the Algerian government about how its military responded to the attack. But, she reiterated that U.S. officials aren’t casting blame on the Algerian troops.

“We’re not from here going to be giving a value judgment about the way the Algerians dealt with this ruthless attack,” Nuland said.

She said the blame rests solely with the militants, whom U.S. officials have described as terrorists.

“We recognize that the government of Algeria was dealing with a ruthless terrorist operation,” Nuland said.

She added, “The people on the ground had to make very difficult calls.”

She said the FBI is continuing  its investigation.

Read ongoing FuelFix coverage of the Algeria hostage crisis:

Jan. 22 — Daughter remembers kindness of dad who died in Algeria attack
Jan. 21 — Second Houston-area man confirmed dead in Algeria
Jan. 21 — Companies reassess security after hostages killed in Algeria
Jan. 20 — Algeria hostage crisis ends; Katy man killed
Jan. 19 — Four BP employees missing after Algeria attack
Jan. 18 — Hostage crisis hikes security worries in key oil region