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Militants Kill 12 People, 6 Farmers

October 16, 2000

ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) _ Armed Islamic militants broke into a home and killed 12 people _ including eight children _ south of Algiers, reports said Monday.

The attackers took two young girls captive Saturday before continuing to a nearby farm, where they killed six farmers, reports said. Security forces reportedly were pursuing them.

Earlier Saturday, six motorists were killed at a fake roadblock, bringing to 60 the number of deaths in the past six days that recall the massacres of Algeria’s 8-year-old Islamic insurgency.

The attack on the home in Ouzra, about 60 miles south of Algiers, began when the militants set off a homemade bomb at the entrance, the newspaper Liberte reported.

They then burst into the house, shooting family members one by one, the newspaper said. Three people escaped with gunshot wounds, and attackers seized the two girls.

The killings reflect a recent upsurge in violence after a relative calm that was attributed in part to President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s effort at national reconciliation. His overtures include a partial amnesty for Islamic insurgents trying to topple the military-backed government.

More than 100,000 people have been killed since the Islamic insurgency began in 1992 after the army canceled national elections that a now-banned Muslim fundamentalist party was poised to win.

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