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Car bomb rips through Algerian town

Latest update : 2008-01-29

A car bomb exploded in the town of Thenia east of the Algerian capital of Algiers, according to security sources. So far, there are conflicting report of casualties.

ALGIERS, Jan 29 (Reuters) - A car bomb exploded in a town
east of the Algerian capital Algiers on Tuesday in the second
such attack in a month, security sources said. There was no
immediate word on casualties.
 
One unconfirmed report from a resident said the targets in 
Thenia 55 km (34 miles) east of Algiers were two buildings
serving as police offices.
 
The blast occurred less than a month after attackers rammed
an explosives laden car into a police station in the town of
Naciria, about 120 km (75 miles) east of Algiers on Jan. 2,
killing four policemen and wounding 20 people.
 
Al Qaeda's north African wing claimed that attack, as well
as a double bombing in Algiers that killed at least 41 people on
Dec. 11, including 17 United Nations staff.
 
The north African OPEC member country is recovering from
more than a decade of violence that began in 1992 when the then
army-backed government scrapped legislative elections that a
radical Islamic party was poised to win. The authorities had
feared an Islamic revolution.
 
Up to 200,000 people are estimated to have been killed.
 
Algeria's violence had fallen since then, but in the past 12
months it has regained some of its former intensity,
particularly in the mountainous Kabylie region.
 
Algerian Islamist rebels aligned themselves with al Qaeda
last year and began copying its tactics by carrying out a string
of high-profile urban suicide bombings.
 
The group was previously called the Salafist Group for
Preaching and Combat and had preferred to ambush government
security forces from its main bases in the remote forests of
Kabylie.
 
Thenia lies on the edge of the Kabylie region.
 
Maghreb Al Qaeda said the December bombing of the U.N.
offices and a court building was aimed at "the slaves of America
and France".
 

Maghreb al Qaeda said it was also behind two suicide
bombings that killed 57 people in September. One was a failed
attempt to assassinate President Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

Date created : 2008-01-29

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