Mauritania forces battle Islamists, escapee said dead
The government of Mauritania is fighting to get rid of Salafists. Salafists are Islamic extremists highly intolerant of Christians and other non-Muslims.
By Noiselle Champagne
April 7,2008 Mauritania (Reuters) – Mauritanian police fought suspected Islamist gunmen on Monday, and a medical source said an escaped al Qaeda suspect accused of killing four French tourists last December was killed in the clashes.
A Reuters reporter saw scores of police and gendarmerie officers, some with assault rifles, others wielding heavier guns mounted on vehicles, on a road leading north out of the capital Nouakchott as shots rang out after dark on Monday.
“It’s a clash with the Salafists (Islamists),” said a gendarmerie colonel at the scene.