Mezrag: Droukdel is under the influence of foreign intell

Madani Mezrag (former head of the AIS militia) believes that Abdelmalek Droukdel, leader of AQIM (in Algeria), is under the influence of foreign intelligence services, though he may be unwitting in this. Interviewed by El Khabar, Mezrag did not state which services or how he knew this. The idea that AQIM and/or other Islamist militias in Algeria are or were funded by foreign intelligence services is commonly repeated by Algerian Islamists, generally denoting their sympathy for the organization in question’s aims; Mezrag therefore states that he does not question Droukdel’s “sincere readiness to die for Islam.” Mezrag also challenges the idea that Bouteflika was the “mastermind” of the Peace and National Reconciliation agreement. Instead he tells Algerians to thank PM Ahmed Ouyahia for his efforts as far back as 1997 constructing the idea of the Reconciliation Charter, and Bouteflika for its implementation. He furthermore states that the procedures that would have lead to a truce under President Zeroual were “lacking.”

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