Monday, 13 August 2012

US accuses Algeria of hindering counter-terrorism

The US State Department's report on global terrorism, released earlier this month is being seen as a warning shot across the bows of the Algerian regime. The US Intelligence services are, as John Schindler's recent whistle-blowing article revealed well aware of how the DRS has created its own terrorists and that AQIM is very much a product of this practice.
In its latest report, however, the US State Department is saying that Algeria is an obstacle to efforts in combating terrorism in the region. This suggests that, at last, the US may be beginning to lose patience with the Algerian regime. The DRS' sponsorship of AQIM and other Islamists groups in Mali would seem to be the catalyst that has sparked the US State Department's response.
The report, not surprisingly, has been seized upon by Morocco. As Tajeddine El Houssaini, professor of international relations at Morocco's University Mohammed V-Agdal, said this week, the US State Department is accusing the regime of Abdelaziz Bouteflika over his role as an obstacle to efforts to eradicate extremist groups.
El Houssaini said there are many links between former members of the "Polisario" and terrorists operating in the Sahel and Sahara. Citing the US report, he linked Algeria's negative role in the fight against terrorism in the region with the lack of a final settlement of the Sahara issue. According to other sources at University Mohammed V, several studies have shown that there are many links between former members of the “Polisario” and terrorists operating in the Sahel and Sahara. According to these reports, which are supported by our own research in this field, there is cooperation between elements of the Polisario and 'terrorists' in both hostage-taking and drug smuggling.
Moroccan sources, we should stress, are careful not to publicly accuse the DRS of being the key agency linking Polisario with the AQIM 'terrorists', although we have increasing evidence of this and believe that the US State Department is also becoming increasingly aware of such relationships.
For more news and expert analysis about Algeria, please see Algeria Focus and Algeria Politics & Security.
© 2012 Menas Associates

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