Two killed, 300 wounded in Algerian riots

13:51, January 09, 2011      

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Two Algerian young men were killed and more than 300 were wounded in the riots and protests sparked across Algeria against skyrocketing food prices in the oil-rich North African country over the last four days, APS news agency quote Interior Minister Dahou Ould Kablia as saying on Saturday.

Abdel-Fatah Akreshe, 32, died on Friday in the town of Bou Smail, about 50 km west of the capital Algiers, the second death fatality of the rioters.

Akreshe died after inhaled tear gas, local daily En-Nahar said on its online edition, without quoting officials or medical sources.

Azzedine Lebza, aged 18, the first fatality, was killed on Friday in Ain Lahdjel in the province of M'sila, about 200 km south of the capital Algiers.

The minister confirmed the death of the two Algerians, stopping short of giving more details.

Local media reports said the protests have broken out in more than 16 provinces across Algeria, although Muslim scholars called in Friday prayers on Algeria youths to maintain "calm and self- restraint."

Algerian Trade Minister Mustafa Benbada said Friday an emergency mini-ministerial meeting will be held later on Saturday to discuss ways to contain a surge in prices of some consumer products.

Benbada has told state radio that price hikes will see a breakthrough starting from the next week.

Source: Xinhua
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