Algeria: March 11, 2004

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A hundred or so members of the GSPC (Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat) have apparently decided to help al Qaeda rebuild its training camps in southern Algeria. European police, in the past year, have arrested over a hundred GSPC members for terrorist activities. GSPC has long recruited among the Algerian refugee population in Europe.  Although the GSPC went through an internal fight late last year (over the al Qaeda issue), the majority of the few hundred active members left have apparently moved south. The US is offering military aid to help the Algerians track the Islamic radicals in the deserts and mountains of southern Algeria. This arrangement may include an American base in Algeria. American aid would include UAVs to patrol those deserts and mountains, as well as Special Forces troops to train and work with the Algerian army.

 

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