24 May 2017
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  • » 01/25/2013, 00.00

    LIBYA - ALGERIA - MALI

    As Muslim terrorists threaten attacks in Benghazi, Westerners flee



    Great Britain, Germany, the Netherlands and Australia urge their citizens to leave the Libyan city because of possible reprisals over French action in Mali. Various Jihadists groups have formed an alliance in North Africa with bases in southern Libya and Mali.

    Benghazi (AsiaNews/Agencies) - Great Britain, Germany, the Netherlands and Australia have urged their citizens to leave the Libyan city of Benghazi due to a "specific, imminent threat to Westerners", linked to French action in Mali and the danger of new kidnappings by Muslim extremists.

    According to British diplomatic sources, Islamists have threatened to carry out attacks against Western targets like the one on the US consulate on 11 September 2011 in which US Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed.

    Over the past two years since the anti-Gaddafi war, Benghazi has been one of the main recruiting centres for Islamic extremists and al-Qaeda fighters.

    A senior Algerian officer claimed that the organisers of the Benghazi consulate attack are the same who seized the gas Tigantourine field in (in In Amenas, south-eastern Algeria) that left 38 hostages and 29 Muslim extremists dead.

    The group recruited by Mokhtar Belmokhtar included several Egyptian jihadists active in Libya.

    Sources in Algiers said that Mohamed-Lamine Bouchneb, the militant leading the attack at the site, had purchased arms for the assault in the Libyan capital, Tripoli.

    The kidnappers gathered, undisturbed, at the southern Libyan town of Ghat, just across the border from Algeria, before their attack.

    It is becoming clear that al Qaeda is spreading in the Sahara. On Wednesday, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spoke to Congress about the events in Benghazi, warning that Jihadist groups have formed a complex alliance in North Africa with southern Libya and Mali as their main bases.

    Indeed, Mokhtar Belmokhtar, the veteran militant who claimed overall responsibility for the Tigantourine attack, is believed to be based in Mali.

    US State Department officials have said that some members of Ansar al-Shariah, the group that carried out the attack on the diplomatic mission in Benghazi, had connections to al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, one of the militant groups now holding northern Mali.

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    See also

    22/01/2013 ALGERIA - ISLAM
    Hostages draped with explosives, used as human shields, killed without reason
    The official death toll now stands at 38 hostages (37 foreigners) and 29 terrorists killed. Two of the terrorists were Canadian, one of them coordinated the attack. "I couldn't die because I have four kids to take care of," a Filipino survivor said. A power struggle within the terrorist camp is one of the reasons for the action.

    17/01/2013 ALGERIA-ISLAM
    Dozens of hostages in the hands of Algerian Islamists linked to al Qaeda and the war in Mali
    Among the 41 hostages there are 7 Americans, 5 Japanese, 9 Norwegians, French, Irish, Austrian. The group wants the release of 100 militants from the Algerian prisons and an end to the intervention of France in Mali. Fears of Islamist attacks in Europe. Algerian forces launch a military operations to rescue the hostages.

    18/01/2013 ALGERIA-ISLAM
    Algerian army in bloody raid to free the hostages. Number of killed and missing unclear
    Local news agencies claim 600 Algerians and four foreigners were released, many governments confirm that some compatriots were released and repatriated. Tokyo say three Japanese are free, but the fate of the other 14 are unknown. International diplomats have criticized the decision of Algiers: the raid went ahead without any consultation.

    10/10/2013 LIBYA
    Prime Minister Ali Zeidan kidnapped: he had denounced arms smuggling in Libya
    The kidnapping occurred this morning at dawn. Groups of former rebels, who now are paid by the Defence and the Interior Ministry suspected. Zeidan was concerned that Libya was becoming the basis for the smuggling of arms to Africa and Syria.

    05/08/2009 CHINA
    About a hundred Chinese and Algerians battle it out in Algiers
    An altercation leads to a furious brawl with knives and rods. The incident is a sign of the difficulties the two groups have in living side by side. The Chinese are active in the country but often take away jobs from locals.



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