- At least 24 policemen have been killed by Islamist militants during an ambush near Mansoura, east of the capital, Algiers yesterday.
The police officers who were reportedly escorting Chinese construction workers near a highway building site, had to stop after militants set off two roadside bombs to block a convoy, reports said.
Reports further said the gunmen fired the police with bullets before stealing their weapons and uniforms.
However, the local official said the Chinese construction workers, who were building a segment of Algeria's east-west highway, had not yet joined the convoy when the attack by the suspected militants took place.
Earlier this month al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, also known as al-Qaeda in North Africa, killed a British man, Edwin Dyer, who they had abducted in January from Niger.
Algerian militants, the former war veterans, from a civil war between radical Islamists and government forces that killed up to 200,000 people during the 1990's, have in recent months staged a number of attacks against the Algerian government.
Violence has since subsided but hard-liners joined Osama bin Laden's terror network in 2006 under the name al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb. They regularly target government forces and have tried to step up attacks against foreigners.
Last week, five AQIM militants were killed near Constantine about 430 kilometers from Algiers, further east on the highway the Chinese construction workers are building, reports stated.
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afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.