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Seven Algerians Die in Four Attacks

March 8, 2000

ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) _ Seven people, including a mayor, were slain in four separate attacks in Algeria on a single day, a newspaper reported Wednesday.

Islamic militants killed two soldiers and the mayor of Ain Bessam, a town 90 miles east of Algiers, on Tuesday, the Liberte daily reported. Several other people were wounded when the attackers opened fire on their victims in a hotel, the report said.

The insurgents, disguised in military uniforms, sacked and firebombed the hotel before leaving.

In another attack Tuesday, a police officer guarding the Senegalese Embassy in Algiers was killed by an armed group who fled after taking the victim’s weapon, the daily said.

And in a small town near the city of Djelfa, 215 miles south of Algiers, a bomb killed two members of a civilian security group trained and armed by the authorities, Liberte reported. A third member of the group was wounded.

A fourth attack targeted a patrol of communal guards near Boumerdes, 35 miles east of the capital, the daily said. Several bombs exploded as the guards were passing through, killing one and wounding two.

Despite President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s efforts to restore peace to the strife-torn North African nation, some Islamic militants have refused to surrender despite a government-backed partial amnesty.

Violence erupted in 1992 after the army canceled legislative elections that the now-banned Islamic Salvation Front was poised to win. More than 100,000 people have died in the violence since then.

Bouteflika’s peace plan offered partial amnesty to Islamic rebels who surrendered by Jan. 13. The president has said that more than 6,000 insurgents have accepted the offer, and promised ``a fight without mercy″ for those who turned it down.

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