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Entries in Algeria (42)


EA Video Analysis: North Africa, "Generational Struggle", and War on Terror 2.0

A few words of concern --- with a  request for knowledge and understanding, rather than caricature and polemic --- to British Prime Minister David Cameron about his declaration of "generational struggle" against "terrorists", "jihadists", Al Qa'eda, and anyone else with a "poisonous ideology":


Israel (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Netanyahu Claims Narrow Victory

1700 GMT: Palestine. A 21-year-old Palestinian woman died after being shot in the face by Israeli soldiers in the West Bank today.

Lubna Hanash was killed in a shooting outside a college near Al-Arrub refugee camp, eight kilometres (five miles) north of Hebron, medics said.

Witnesses said a civilian car with Israeli plates stopped on the main Hebron-Bethlehem road in the southern West Bank and two men wearing military fatigues got out and began shooting towards a nearby Palestinian college. Medics said another two people were injured by gunshot wounds.

A military spokeswoman said troops on a routine patrol had been "confronted by Palestinians with Molotov cocktails" and opened fire in self-defence, wounding several of them.

Meanwhile, a 15-year-old Palestinian who was hit in the face by Israeli gunfire last Friday died of his injuries, an Israeli hospital spokeswoman told AFP.

Saleh Amarin had been seriously hurt by a bullet fired by Israeli troops during clashes in Aida refugee camp, north of Bethlehem.

The two deaths raised to six the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli gunfire since 10 January.

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Algeria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: At Least 81 Killed in Gas Plant Siege

See also Syria Live Coverage: The Battle for Idlib Begins?
Sunday's Algeria (and Beyond) Coverage: Gas Plant Siege Ends with 23 Hostages, 32 Attackers Killed

1652 GMT: Yemen. A US drone strike has killed two suspected insurgents and wounded three others, two of them seriously, according to security officials.

The airstrike, which hit a car east of the capital Sanaa, was the third in the same area since Saturday and the 25th in Yemen since 24 December.

On Saturday, two drone strikes killed eight people in Marib Province.

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Algeria (and Beyond) Coverage: Gas Plant Siege Ends with 23 Hostages, 32 Attackers Killed

See also Bahrain Propaganda 101: Regime Looking for a Few Good Women on Twitter
Israel Feature: The Settlers and the Politician Trying to Re-Make the Jewish State
Syria Live Coverage: "Darayya is Being Pounded to Dust"
Saturday's Algeria (and Beyond) Coverage: Hostage Situation Continues at Gas Plant

2241 GMT: Egypt. Protesters have set a courthouse in Alexandria on fire after the suspension of the trial of six senior police officers for deaths of protesters during the 2011 uprising.

Young men threw rocks at police, who responded with tear gas. Two trucks that transport riot police was set ablaze.

Judge Mohammed Hammad Abdel-Hadi resigned from the case on Sunday, giving no reason. His resignation means a new trial for the officers accused of using excessive force.

Since President Hosni Mubarak was deposed in February, almost 100 police officers have been brought to trial on charges of killing and wounding protesters. All were acquitted or received suspended sentences.

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Algeria (and Beyond) Coverage: Hostage Situation Continues at Gas Plant

See also Mali, Algeria, and Beyond: A Beginner's Guide to the Bad Guys
Turkey Feature: 10,000s in Funeral Ceremony for Kurdish Activists "Peace Now!"
Syria Live Coverage: UN Human Rights Chief Calls for War Crimes Investigation
Friday's Algeria (and Beyond) Coverage: At Least 30 Hostages Killed in Rescue Attempt

1435 GMT: Egypt. A criminal court has invoked a Presidential amnesty and dismissed charges against 379 people accused of taking part in clashes with police.

Almost weeks of street fighting on downtown Cairo's Mohammed Mahmoud Street in November 2011 killed 42 people, most of them slain by security forces. The demonstrators were demanding a timetable for a military Supreme Council to hand over power and hold Presidential elections.

1425 GMT: Algeria. Seven foreign hostages have reportedly been killed in the final operation by Algerian forces against the kidnappers, 11 of whom were slain.

1340 GMT: Algeria. Algerian State media is reporting that the hostage crisis is over at the In Amenas gas plant, with 11 attackers killed by Algerian forces.

The reports claims that 16 foreign hostages --- including two Americans, two German, and a Portuguese ---- have been freed.

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Mali, Algeria, and Beyond: A Beginner's Guide to the Bad Guys (Karl reMarks)

Mokhtar Belmokthar, a.k.a., Mr MarlboroMokhtar Belmokhtar --- The Masked Ones 

Mokhtar Belmokhtar’s name is a subtle nod towards Jean Valjean, the central character in Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables. (Al-Qaeda’s dalliance with symbolism is legendary.) Belmokhtar is believed to be responsible for the recent hostage-taking operation in Algeria.

The one-eyed Islamist is also known as Mr Marlboro and The Uncatchable. His group, The Masked Ones, go under various names including Khaled Abul Abbas Brigade and The Blood Battalion. 

The nickname Mr Marlboro comes from Belmokhtar’s cigarette smuggling activity. Other al-Qaeda groups have banned smoking in the areas they control. According to experts, this shows that al-Qaeda is learning from the European governments when it comes to implementing contradictory but lucrative tobacco policies.

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Algeria (and Beyond) Coverage: At Least 30 Hostages Killed in Rescue Attempt

See also Syria Live Coverage: Another Mass Killing, Another Dispute of Responsibility
Thursday's Mali (and Beyond) Live Coverage: France Prepares Ground Operations While Insurgents Seize 41 Foreigners in Algeria

2124 GMT: Algeria. An Algerian hostage, who escaped during the army assault on the In Amenas gas plant, has spoken of casualties:

There were so many deaths. I was shocked. I can't say the exact number. Foreign hostages died, Algerian hostages died and there were deaths among the terrorists.

The hostage said one of the leaders of the assailants was killed. Some of the attackers are still in the central working area of the gas facility. People from the area warned, "It's very difficult for the army to stage an assault because everything could explode. It's dangerous."

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Mali (and Beyond) Live Coverage: France Prepares Ground Operations While Insurgents Seize 41 Foreigners in Algeria

2126 GMT: Algeria. Algerian State Television has confirmed that at least four foreigners have been killed into today's attempted hostage rescue:

Two of the victims were Britons and the other two Filipinos, the report said after the end of the operation was announced late on Thursday.

Communication Minister Mohamed Said said earlier that troops had been forced to act after talks with the kidnappers failed.

He said many fighters had been killed in the operation at the In Amenas gas field.

Sources for Reuters report that the death toll may be much higher:

Quoting an unnamed Algerian security source, Reuters reports that 30 hostages were killed in the gas plant attack, including 7 foreigners. The report does not give the nationalities of the foreigners who died.

Eleven militants from six different countries – including one from France – also were killed, the report says. The militants' nationalities were given as 3 Egyptians, 2 Algerians, 2 Tunisians, 2 Libyans a Frenchman and a Malian.

Meanwhile, David Cameron has cancelled a planned speech, but did say that the UK needs to be "prepared for the possibility of further bad news."

1814 GMT: Algeria. A summary of the press conference at the US State Department:

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Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Back to the War of Attrition

See also Saudi Arabia Feature: A Precious Moment with the Religious Police
Bahrain Audio Feature: Why the Detention of Photojournalist Ahmed Humaidan Matters --- Scott Lucas with Monocle 24
Friday's Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: A Deadly Car Bomb in Damascus

1943 GMT: Syria. AFP opens its profile of elderly Christians sheltering near the front lines in Aleppo:

The aging Christians holed up inside a retirement home in the devastated northern Syrian city of Aleppo have no light, no telephone lines, and little idea of what is happening in the outside world.

But fellow Christians and rebel fighters still ensure they do not go hungry, bringing the dozen or so residents whatever food they can every day.

The St. Elie Rest Home, founded in 1863, is behind a black metal door on a street strewn with debris and rubbish a short way from the front line where rebels and regime forces face off against each other.

"We welcome everyone who has been abandoned or is in need," says Sister Marie, 75, the beaming Mother Superior.

"This is a place where life can be enjoyed," she adds, gesturing to the 20 rooms adjoining a cloister and courtyard with a fountain and greenery.

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US War on Terror Feature: Preparing for Military Operations in Africa (Barnes/Perez)

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton presses Algeria to join intervention in Mali, 29 October 2012

Military counterterrorism officials are seeking more capability to pursue extremist groups in Africa and elsewhere that they believe threaten the U.S., and the Obama administration is considering asking Congress to approve expanded authority to do it.

The move, according to administration and congressional officials, would be aimed at allowing U.S. military operations in Mali, Nigeria, Libya and possibly other countries where militants have loose or nonexistent ties to al Qaeda's Pakistan headquarters. Depending on the request, congressional authorization could cover the use of armed drones and special operations teams across a region larger than Iraq and Afghanistan combined, the officials said.

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