Former GSPC Leader Calls On AQIM Fighters To Lay Down Arms

Algerian newspaper, Enahar, received a statement by Hassan Hattab, also know as Abou Hamza, the founder and former leader of the Salafist Group for the Call and Combat (GSPC). The statement called on Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) fighters to put down their arms. It was the first issued by Hattab in years and came just a few hours after a dual suicide attack that killed 43 people at a police academy in Boumerdes.

"I appeal to those who are up in the mountains, and to those who wish to join the armed struggle … I advise you to rethink your actions, give up what you are doing and return to your society and your families," Hattab wrote, "this is better for you and your religion, and you know that there is a consensus on the fact that it is not permissible to engage in a fight in this country."