- Islamists hardliners have kidnapped and killed mayor in a town east of Algiers, Algerian Interior Ministry has said.
A ministry statement Thursday said that Mayor Fateh Bouchibane was abducted late Wednesday by an unspecified armed group at intersection in Tifra, about 263 kilometers east of the capital.
"Security forces found the body of Timezrit mayor along with a charred vehicle belonging to local government," ministry said in a statement.
The official APS news agency said Mr Bouchibane was abducted at a crossroads shortly after sunset Wednesday. Though details of abduction were not immediately clear, statement said Algerian insurgents often set up fake checkpoints, dressing as soldiers or police, to stop vehicles, loot travelers and sometimes kill those they view as enemies.
According to government statement, several government officials and civil servants have died in similar ambushes this year.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the mayor's assassination. Insurgents have increased attacks against government targets since formally linking up with al-Qaeda in 2006 and calling themselves al-Qaeda in Islamic North Africa.
Algeria's Islamic insurgency was triggered 16 years ago by an army decision to cancel national elections to thwart a likely victory by an Islamic fundamentalist party. Up to an estimated 200,000 people have been killed since then.
In recent months, Algeria has witnessed a wave of attacks claimed by Al-Qaeda's north African offshoot, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.
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