Results tagged “Algeria”
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Al Qaeda-linked militants holding hostages at a gas field have offered to swap two American captives for two terrorists being held in US jails, including "Blind Sheikh" Omar Abdel Rahman. Some 60 foreigners among the supposed 132 hostages are unaccounted for and feared dead. The Algerian military raid to free the hostages continued for a second day, and 18 militants are said to have been killed. The kidnappers, from the Battalion of Blood and the Movement of the Islamic Youth in the South, warned of more attacks and told locals to stay away from foreign energy companies' facilities.
Algerian troops launched an operation to free 41 hostages being held at a gas facility by an Islamist group called Battalion of Blood; 25 hostages are said to have escaped and six were killed along with eight militants. Other reports say that 34 of the captives and 15 militants have been killed in the rescue attempt. Some 600 Algerian workers fled the site. A report said some hostages are being forced to wear explosives. British and Spanish oil companies are evacuating workers from other Algerian facilities.
Militants linked to al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb attacked a bus carrying workers to the In Amenas refinery, killing a Frenchman and a British national and wounding several other people, then moved on to attack the refinery itself, where they took 41 people hostage. Algerian military forces are attempting to free the hostages; negotiations for their release are ongoing.
A court sentenced Moqatel Abou Jebel to life in prison for kidnapping 15 foreign tourists in 2003. Youcef Ben Mohamed, a Malian national, was acquitted, but sentenced to seven years for belonging to a terror group. Jebel carried out the kidnappings on the order of Abderrazak El Para, a GSPC commander.
An Algerian newspaper reported that Izza Rezki, the head of finance for al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, was killed along with six other terrorists in an operation on Jan. 1. Rezki was also reported killed in late November 2012.
Algerian security forces killed seven more al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb fighters during a raid in the Oued Bahara area of Boumerdes. The AQIM fighters were members of the El-Feth brigade.
Security forces killed six al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb fighters during a raid in Bouzegza. The military is preparing for guerrilla warfare to combat Islamist fighters along the border with Mali.
Algerian army, air force, national gendarmerie, and special operation forces are conducting guerilla training exercises near the southern border to prepare for possible clashes with armed Islamists in northern Mali. Algeria is also tightening border controls, to curb the "co-operation and co-ordination between smuggling gangs, armed terrorist groups and arms trade mafia along the border strip between Algeria and Tunisia."
The Algerian military reportedly killed a "dangerous" Libyan member of al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb and detained three more fighters during a raid in Khenchela. An Algerian policeman was killed during the raid.