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Mortar shell attack on an Algerian gas field, no casualties

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According to MEA Risk sources, an insurgent group has attacked a gas field exploited by the Algerian state-owned energy company Sonatrach, Statoil and BP in the In Salah gas site of Krechba, in the Saharian province of Ghardaia. Two homemade mortar shells were fired; the first one fell on the base entrance point, and the second landed on inside the base. There were no casualties.

The army has launched large-scale sweep operations in the area at 10:30 this morning to locate the insurgents. This is the first terrorist attack to take place in southern Algeria since the In Amenas hostage crisis in January 2013.

Although the operations have not been disrupted, the Central Processing Facility (CPF) was shut down as a safety precaution. No casualties were reported thanks to the swift response of the local army detachment. Security sources have revealed that two insurgents, thought to be part of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, were involved in the mortar attack. The army is still trying to locate them. In the meantime the multinational companies based in southern Algeria have been placed on lockdown.

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The North Africa Journal is a leading English-language publication focused on North Africa. The Journal covers primarily the Maghreb region and expands its general coverage to the Sahel, Egypt, and beyond, when events in those regions affect the broader North Africa geography. The Journal does not have any affiliation with any institution and has been independent since its founding in 1996. Our position is to always bring our best analysis of events affecting the region, and remain as neutral as humanly possible. Our coverage is not limited to one single topic, but ranges from economic and political affairs, to security, defense, social and environmental issues. We rely on our full staff analysts and editors to bring you best-in-class analysis. We also work with sister company MEA Risk LLC, to leverage the presence on the ground of a solid network of contributors and experts. Information on MEA Risk can be found at www.MEA-Risk.com.