Tunisian Forces Kill Two “Terrorists”: Military Sources

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Al-Akhbar Management

Published Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Tunisian army forces killed two "terrorists" in the western province of Kasserine on Tuesday, a military source told Anadolu news agency.

"The two slain terrorists were moved to the military barracks in Kasserine," the source said.

Last month, officials said 100 suspected militants were arrested, claiming some were preparing attacks.

The Tunisian government also published video footage showing evidence of the influence of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) on some of those detained.

Tunisia is waging a campaign against hardline Islamist groups who emerged in the country during its transition to democracy after the 2011 uprising against autocrat Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali.

News of the arrests came one week after four Tunisian policemen were killed by militants in the central region of Kasserine, close to the Algerian border.

ISIS has already expanded its presence in Libya, where it has exploited the chaos in the country since the 2011 NATO-backed uprising, and there are fears it is seeking to expand its activities in the rest of North Africa.

In January, the Libyan branch of ISIS claimed to have executed two Tunisian journalists who went missing in September.

Moreover, Tunisia has been a major source of Islamist fighters traveling to Syria since 2011.

An estimated 15,000 militants from at least 80 countries are believed to have entered Syria to join units that are now part of ISIS, The Washington Post revealed in October in a map tracking the flow of foreigners traveling to Syria.

According to the map, Tunisia comes in first place with an estimated 3,000 militants currently operating in Syria.

Among the Islamist militant groups to have emerged after Tunisia’s 2011 uprising is Ansar al-Sharia.

The main hotbed of militant activity has been the Chaambi mountain range bordering Algeria, where fighters took refuge in after fleeing a French military offensive in Mali last year. Since then, Tunisia has deployed thousands of soldiers to the area.

(Anadolu, Al-Akhbar)

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