September 17, 1997 |
A small, overloaded boat capsized in the Strait of Gibraltar, drowning six North Africans who were apparently trying to emigrate to Spain. Police said about 15 others were missing. Officials said the passengers were believed to be fleeing poverty and unemployment in North Africa.
September 2, 1997 |
Reeling from a recent spate of massacres, Algeria's government ordered the house arrest Monday of an Islamic leader released from prison just seven weeks ago. The Interior Ministry announced it will restrict the freedom of Abbasi Madani, spiritual leader of the banned Islamic Salvation Front, on grounds he had become involved in unacceptable political activities.
August 30, 1997 |
Hooded men armed with axes descended on an isolated farm village before dawn Friday, slitting the throats of residents or decapitating them. Villagers and hospital workers said more than 300 people were slain. The attack appeared to be the worst carnage since Algeria's Islamic insurgency began five years ago, although it was unclear who carried it out. Witnesses said severed heads lay on the doorsteps of Rais, a village in the Sidi Moussa region 15 miles south of the capital.
June 6, 1997 |
Showing more a sense of desperation than faith that their country's agony would be eased, more than half of Algeria's eligible voters braved threats from Islamic militants to cast ballots Thursday for the country's first multi-party parliament. But the election was marred by a few incidents of violence and accusations of intimidation against parties critical of the government. Even before the counting began, some opposition leaders warned of widespread vote fraud.
June 5, 1997 |
After 60,000 deaths and five years of terror that followed the cancellation of the last general election, the exhausted people of Algeria are trying again today to choose the country's first multi-party parliament. Expectations for a problem-free vote are not high in this capital, where the thud of a midday bomb no longer elicits a serious pause in the luncheon conversation and visiting journalists are routinely furnished with a trio of gunmen to take to interviews as "protection."
February 2, 1997 |
A little-known militant Muslim group thought to be rooted in Algeria's educated upper class has claimed responsibility for killing the country's top union leader, newspapers reported Saturday. The claim by the Algerian Jihad Islamic Front (FIDA) could not be independently verified. Police have refused all comment on the investigation.
April 15, 1996 |
On a lightning visit here carefully scripted to accommodate his frailty and avoid offending Islamic hosts, Pope John Paul II called Sunday for peaceful dialogue between Muslims and Christians in turbulent North Africa. John Paul was the perfect guest in remarks to welcoming government officials, saving his concerns about Islamic fundamentalism for his meeting with leaders of the tiny Roman Catholic community in a nation of 8.5 million Muslims.
April 13, 1996 |
Frail but determined, Pope John Paul II ventures into Muslim North Africa on Sunday for a pep-rally visit to a fading Roman Catholic Church there and to deliver a call for religious tolerance that is meant to echo across the Middle East. The one-day visit to Tunisia will also test the 75-year-old pope's stamina after fresh alarm about his health and an exhausting week of Easter ceremonies at the Vatican.
February 12, 1996 |
Two powerful car bombs in the Algerian capital killed 17 people and wounded 93 others Sunday as bloodshed deepened in a nation torn by Islamic insurgency. The blasts--targeting a town hall and a building housing some of the nation's main newspapers--undermined official efforts to use censorship to play down the 4-year-old conflict with Muslim rebels in which an estimated 40,000 people have died.
January 21, 1996 |
Blowing dust dimmed the sun over this ancient city, where Mohammed Tayeb fled after giving up trying to raise grain, beans and livestock in his drought-plagued fields. Tayeb is part of a dangerously growing flight to Morocco's cities, creating urban tinderboxes of rising unemployment and Muslim radicalism that could undermine the rule of King Hassan II.