AQIM Chief Vows More Attacks In The Maghreb Countries

The leader of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) Abu Mus'ab Abdel Wadud, warned of new attacks in an audiotape released on militant Islamist forums Monday. In the 28-minute tape "A Message to Our People in the Islamic Maghreb," he pledged to keep up the fight against the governments in the Maghreb countries, and called on Muslims in those countries to support the militants. Abdel Wadud strongly criticized the Arab regimes in North Africa, from Mauritania to Libya , and described them as "puppet regimes" serving the interests of their "masters" in the West. He particularly denounced France's efforts to create the Euro-Mediterranean alliance, which he qualified as a plan to revive France's colonial ambitions.

Abdel Wadud also denied accusations that the militants were targeting innocent civilians, and asked his audience not to hang around government institutions and other buildings that constitute "legitimate targets."