Algerian Foreign Minister Muhammad Ben Yahia was among three survivors when an Algerian airliner crashed while trying to land in bad weather at Bamako airport in Mali.
Mr. Ben Yahia has taken part in successive Algerian governments since 1966, when he was appointed information minister. He has also held the higher-education and finance portfolios. His diplomatic skill was shown when he acted as an intermediary between Iran and the United States during the hostage crisis, which culminated in their release last January. He won hi gh praise from the US for his tactful handling of the affair