Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Twin car bombings hit Algerian hotel, barracks in Bouira near Hotel Sofia.

Deadly bombings hit Algerian town; Eleven people have been killed and 31 injured by twin car bombs near a hotel and a barracks in Bouira, south east of the Algerian capital, state media say. Witnesses said the blasts went off in quick succession.

The attacks come one day after a car bomb killed 43 people and injured a further 38 at a police college near Boumerdes, east of Algiers.

A car laden with explosives went off at about 6 a.m. in front of the Bouira sector military command, injuring four soldiers, according to APS. It was followed a minute later by a second bombing against the nearby Hotel Sofi, Bouira's largest, witnesses said. That attack killed 11 people and wounded 27 others.

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In recent months Algeria has suffered regular attacks blamed on Islamist insurgents linked to al-Qaeda. The country has been rebuilding with the help of oil and gas profits after a brutal civil conflict in which Islamist militants led an insurgency against state security forces.

Wednesday's bombs went off near the Hotel Sofi and the military headquarters in Bouira, which is about 100km (62 miles) from Algiers, state media reported. The blast at the hotel hit a nearby passenger bus, reports said. One of the bombs ripped off the front of the military headquarters, and the blasts could be heard in a radius of several hundred metres, witnesses said.

Just a day earlier, a suicide car bomber drove a car packed with explosives into the entrance of a paramilitary police college in Issers, near Boumerdes, about 50km (31 miles) east of Algiers.

Previous bombings have been claimed by the North African branch of al-Qaeda, known as al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb
which was formed from the remnants of Algeria's insurgency and was previously known as the Salafist Group for Call and Combat.

Bill Warner, Private Investigator

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