Qaeda claims Algeria attack - 14 dead
Dubai - Al-Qaeda's north Africa branch on Wednesday claimed an attack on an Algerian army barracks in which 14 soldiers were killed, US-based SITE monitoring service said.
Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb claimed "the successful invasion that was carried out... on a military barracks of the Algerian army" on the night of April 15, a SITE translation of a statement posted on jihadist forums said.
"The mujahedeen were able to take full control over the barracks after they killed and injured 30 apostates," the statement said.
It added that an attacker was killed, saying that "the mujahedeen made the reception for brother Rabie as a martyr".
"The attack began at 07:07 with mortar shells and various kinds of machine guns... the battle intensified and the two sides clashed, then escalated more for nearly two hours," said the statement, adding that the attack was "between the city of Yakouren and the city of Azazga".
Local residents said that an attack on a military guard post east of Algiers killed 14 soldiers and one of the assailants.
The daily El Watan reported on its website that around 10 soldiers were killed in the attack late on Friday by a "terrorist" group at Azazga, 140km from the capital.
The Azazga guard post is located on the edge of the dense Yakouren forest, where al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb is active.
AQIM emerged in early 2007 from an Algerian armed Islamist movement, the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat. It now operates in several northwestern African countries, including Mali, Mauritania and Niger.