Car Bombs Injure Three at Justice Ministry, University, Dorm
ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) _ Four car bombs exploded in Algiers today, one of them killing three people, and gunmen shot dead two other people in the latest violence blamed on Muslim insurgents.
Three car bombs went off outside the Justice Ministry, a university and a student dormitory complex, police reported. A fourth exploded on a highway, killing the three people inside the car, witnesses said.
Two people, including a South Korean businessman, were shot and killed by unidentified gunmen who escaped.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attacks but officials blamed Muslim extremists trying to bring down the military government.
Kang Dae-hyun, director of the Korean manufacturing conglomerate’s Algeria office, was shot several times in the head in the eastern suburb of Bordj el Kiffan, said government sources speaking on condition of anonymity.
His death brings to 63 the number of foreigners killed since Muslim radicals began targeting foreigners 13 months ago.
A top official of a charity group also was gunned down today outside his home in a southern Algiers suburb. Lahcene Ben Saadallah was the vice president of the group Orientation and Reform.
Explosives packed in a white car parked near a university entrance went off as students were heading to class, witnesses said. One woman, bleeding from her face and an arm, was taken away by ambulance.
Another car bomb exploded outside a student dormitory complex, slightly injuring two other women, police said. It was not clear if the attack at the Justice Ministry in downtown Algiers, close to the dormitory complex, caused any injuries.
The fourth car reportedly exploded in the residential area of Kouba, but details were sketchy.
The Armed Islamic Group, the most violent of Muslim groups opposed to the government, had threatened to attack high schools and universities because it said their teachings went against Islamic law.
Since the beginning of the summer, fires have been set at more than 600 schools across Algeria.
The violence today came as militant Muslims widened their attacks on police in Algiers, killing at least 16 policemen in the past week.
The latest deaths reported were six policemen killed Monday when insurgents machine-gunned a police vehicle in Baraki, a suburb southeast of Algiers, the newspaper El Watan said.
Six civilians were also shot and killed as they waited for a bus, the paper said.
The report could not be immediately confirmed, but El Watan has been well- informed about such matters in the past.
More than 10,000 people have died in more than 2 1/2 years of violence between government forces and Muslims who want to replace military rule with an Islamic state.