In this undated image released Wednesday Jan. 16, 2013, by BP petroleum company, showing the Amenas natural gas field in the eastern central region of
In this undated image released Wednesday Jan. 16, 2013, by BP petroleum company, showing the Amenas natural gas field in the eastern central region of Algeria, where Islamist militants raided and took hostages Wednesday Jan. 16, 2013. Islamist militants from Mali attacked a natural gas field partly operated by BP in southern Algeria early on Wednesday, killing a security guard and kidnapping at least eight people, including English, Norwegian and Japanese nationals, an Algerian security official and local media reported. Algerian forces, later caught up with and surrounded the kidnappers and negotiations for the release of the hostages are ongoing, officials said.(AP Photo/BP) (bp)

MADRID - Spanish and British oil companies are evacuating workers from Algerian energy facilities following the hostage-taking by Islamic militants in the Sahara desert and Algeria's attempt to free them.

Spain's Compania Espanola de Petroleos SA says it moved workers from two Algerian facilities to the center of the country as a precautionary measure and that its Algeria operations were functioning normally. Spain gets nearly half its natural gas from Algeria.

BP PLC says plans are under way to bring some non-essential workers out of Algeria.

The hostages were taken Wednesday by militants linked to Mali's rebel Islamists at a remote Sahara natural gas plant. The site is operated by BP, the Norwegian company Statoil and the Algerian state oil company Sonatrach. A Japanese company, JGC Corp, provides services for the facility.