3 killed in Algerian bomb blasts
January 22, 1997
Web posted at: 10:45 a.m. EST (1545 GMT)
BLIDA, Algeria (CNN) -- At least three people were killed and
dozens of others injured Wednesday when two car bombs ripped
through the crowded center of the city that is home to one of
Algeria's most important military bases. The blasts came a
day after 18 people
were killed in car bomb attacks in Algiers.
The first bomb exploded at about 10 a.m. (0900 GMT) in a
market in central Blida, killing at least two and
wounding many more, residents said. The second bomb killed
at least one person when it went off in the city's main
street. Residents said the attacks caused considerable
The region, about 30 miles (50 km) south of Algiers,
has been the center of an intensifying terror campaign blamed
on Islamic insurgents. Blida is the site of a major military
base and also is known as a Muslim guerrilla stronghold.
On Tuesday, two car bombs exploded in
the hills above Algiers, less than a mile apart. Forty-two
people were killed in another Algiers
blast on Sunday.
No one has claimed responsibility for any of the attacks, but
suspicion has fallen on Islamic militants who have been
fighting security forces in Algeria for five years.
Algerian newspapers said Tuesday's attacks raised the death
toll since the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan on
January 10 to at least 150. They estimated 170 others
have been wounded.
Algiers residents reported seeing leaflets that said there
would be 50 bombs during Ramadan. The Armed
Islamic Group had warned it would increase attacks during
the holy month.
About 60,000 people have been killed in Algeria's violence
since early 1992 when authorities canceled a general election
that radical Islamists were poised to win.
Reuters contributed to this report.
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