AQIM claims deadly attack in Algeria

Al Qaeda’s North African wing said its fighters were behind an attack in Algeria earlier last week in which several soldiers were killed.
Algeria, the world’s fourth largest exporter of natural gas and eighth biggest oil exporter, has for nearly two decades been fighting an insurgency by Islamist militants, who in the past few years have been affiliated to al Qaeda, Reuters reports.
“The mujahideen attacked them like a lion on a prey and they, with God grace, killed no less than 15 of them and wounded several others,” Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb said in a statement posted on an Islamist website.
Algerian newspapers said last week that at least 14 Algerian soldiers had been killed in an insurgent ambush.
The group said its militants ambushed the soldiers’ convoy of three vehicles and seized nine assault rifles and ammunitions.
The violence has subsided significantly since the 1990s, when the conflict killed 200 000 people, according to estimates by non-governmental groups. But the militants remain a threat, staging periodic bombings and ambushes.
The past two months have seen an upsurge in the violence. Insurgents killed 18 paramilitary police officers and one civilian, according to officials, in an ambush in the east of Algeria in June. That was the deadliest attack in nearly a year.

Pic: North wing AQIM