Results tagged “Algeria”
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Algerian officials have pledged a strong response to terrorism after a local group has declared allegiance to the Islamic State. Yesterday, the defense ministry announced that Algerian troops killed two militants and seized "two Kalashnikov rifles, a pair of binoculars, three grenades, cell phones and other items" in Jijel province on Oct. 26.
The Algerian Army arrested two terrorists last week, including a Mauritanian member of a terror group affiliated with the Islamic State. On Oct. 20, Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal rejected the idea that the Islamic State has a presence in Algeria.
The Algerian military ambushed a group of Islamist "militants" in Biskra on Oct. 6 and killed three fighters. On Oct. 7, the military captured 20 "criminals," including 12 Sudanese and eight Chadians, in Tiririne near the borders with Niger.
The military killed five "criminals" and injured four others in an ambush near the border with Niger yesterday; all of the "criminals" were foreigners, and one was a Libyan. On Sept. 30, troops searching for the body of slain French tourist Herve Gourdel clashed with a terrorist group outside Aït Oualbane, between Tizi Ouzou et Bouiranear Tikjda.
Justice Minister Louh said Algerian authorities have identified the suspects who beheaded French tourist Hervé Gourdel on Sept. 24 in the Djurdjura Mountains. Gourdel was kidnapped on Sept. 21 by Jund al-Khalifa fi Ard al-Jazayer ("Soldiers of the Caliphate in Algeria"), a newly emerged terror group led by Abdelmalek El Gouri a.k.a. Khaled Abou Souleiman, a former AQIM commander who has sworn allegiance to the Islamic State. Some 2,000 soldiers have been deployed to the area to search for Gourdel's body and to arrest the terrorist suspects; Louh said the investigation is continuing.
Jund al Khilifah, a splinter group from al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb that joined the Islamic State, kidnapped a Frenchman in Kabylie on Sept. 21. The ministry of defense claimed it killed a "leading terrorist" with ties to al Qaeda during an operation in Kabylie.
The Air Force has stepped up security along the Libyan border in anticipation of terrorist attacks. A previously unknown group, Djound Al-Khilafa en Algerie (Soldiers of the Caliphate in Algeria) pledged allegiance to the Islamic State on Sept. 13; the group is said to have emerged from AQIM cells in central Algeria and to be led by Abdelmalek El Gouri a.k.a. Khaled Abou Souleiman.
Algeria has announced the release of the last of the hostages kidnapped in April 2012 from its consulate in Gao, Mali by the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO). Another hostage, consul Boualem Saies, died in captivity, and diplomat Tahar Touati was assassinated, according to the Foreign Ministry. The head of the Algerian Army met recently with the head of US Africa Command to discuss security cooperation and the instability in Libya.
Algerian forces surrounded a group of 20 fighters from Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, and Mali near Kenchele on Aug. 24, including several alleged senior al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb leaders. Wanted Ansar al Sharia leader Sami Essid was said to be among 13 arrested who were planning attacks and also escapes for other detained terrorists. Essid has also served as al Qaeda's key operative in Italy.
Security forces sweeping terrorist cells in Tlemcen province killed two terrorists in Ouled Riyah and seized ammunition; the operation began after a tip-off. Algeria opened its borders to Egyptians fleeing Libya; the border to Libya had been closed since May 2013.
Three soldiers and four municipal guards were killed by a roadside bomb while on patrol in the western province of Sidi Bel Abbes yesterday. Al Qaeda-linked militants are suspected in the attack.
The US Embassy in Algiers warned that a "terrorist group" may attack near US-owned or operated hotels in Algeria on July 4 (US Independence Day) or July 5 (Algeria's Independence Day). A Tunisian official recently told an Algerian news outlet that Mokhtar Belmokhtar a.k.a. Belaouer is currently in Libya, where he is allegedly trying to control North African jihadist activity and has recruited fighters returning from Syria.
Security forces dismantled a terrorist cell in El Oued in Souf, near the Tunisian border, that was financing jihadists across the border in Kasserine. Eleven people were arrested and 115,000 euros was seized during the raid.
At least 11 policemen were injured in clashes in the Saharan city of Ghardiaia over the weekend. Fighting between Malakites and Ibadites has raged in the area since December, killing at least 13 people and injuring over 400; some blame religious extremists, including Salafists, for the ongoing conflict. Foreign Minister Lamamra claimed that Algeria is making "huge efforts" to secure its borders, but replied evasively when questioned about the presence of jihadists in Algeria.
President Bouteflika called for the "utmost vigilance" against terrorism and urged support for the military's ongoing efforts, in the wake of "a dangerous infiltration attempt by a heavily armed terrorist group, whose elements are from Mali, Libya, and Tunisia" that was recently foiled by security forces near Tinzaouatine in Tamanrasset. The operation is ongoing. On May 1, France deported an Algerian jihadist who was arrested by Turkish police along with five other would-be fighters for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Sham as they traveled on a bus toward Aleppo.
The Defense Ministry announced that 10 militants have been killed so far in an ongoing operation in Tamanrasset. Security forces also seized 12 Kalashnikovs, an RPG-7 rocket launcher, a GP58 grenade launcher, three ATVs, two motorcycles, and other items, including ammunition. Weapons were also found buried in the Col of Anai area.
Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb claimed the April 19 ambush of an Algerian army convoy near Tizi Ouzou in Kabylie. The latest US State Department worldwide terrorism report said that in 2013 Algerian forces had "decreased the number of successful terrorist attacks, sustained pressure on AQMI group's Algeria-based leadership ... and further isolated AQMI."
A roadside bomb attack on a gendarmerie patrol killed two policemen and a civilian in Chabet El Ameur southeast of Boumerdes, the first attack in the town in nearly five years. Security sources estimate that fewer than 20 members of the al Qaeda-affiliated GSPC remain in Boumerdes province. The military killed two Islamists and seized rifles and grenades during a raid in Gouraya in Tipaza province last week. The Minister of Religious Affairs pardoned 30 imams in eastern Algeria who had refused to perform funeral prayers after the crash of a military plane in the area that killed 77 people, mostly soldiers and their families.
Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb fighters killed 11 Algerian soldiers and wounded 11 more in an ambush in Tizi Ouzou. The Defense Ministry said 37 militants have been killed in Algeria since January.
Security forces killed three suspected terrorists in the mountainous Kabylie region yesterday, and seven others were reportedly killed over the weekend after they entered the country from Tunisia. An al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula commander was killed recently in Tizi Ouzou. Seven people have died in clashes between Arabs and Berbers in the historic city of Gardhaia. Deputy Defense Minister Saleh vowed that security forces would purge Algeria of criminal terrorism.