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Vol 45 No 6

Published 19th March 2004


Le Para moves east

On 9-10 March, fighting in Chad's Tibesti region, near the Niger border, indicated that fighters from Algeria's biggest active Islamist militia, the Groupe Salafiste de Prédication et de Combat (GSPC, Fundamentalist Group for Preaching and Fighting) had made a dramatic move east. Abdel Razak 'Le Para', head of the GSPC's Southern Command, may have been squeezed out of his Malian and Saharan Algerian boltholes. With United States' troops 'exercising' in Mali under Washington's new Sahel initiative (AC Vol 45 Nos 4 & 5), US technology and, perhaps, firepower, may have changed the strategic balance on Algeria's southern flank.

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