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Algeria hikes military spending as Al Qaida threat rises

Special to WorldTribune.com

CAIRO — Algeria, facing increasing threats from Al Qaida, has
increased its defense budget for 2013.

The Algerian Defense Ministry has requested a $10.3 billion budget for
2013, an increase of more than 14.2 percent from the previous year.

Algerian Air Force Su-30MK fighter-jet.

The ministry’s request included additional funds for weapons procurement, particularly in the area of counter-insurgency.

“The increase is part of an expansion of the ministry into areas that
had long been under the authority of the Interior Ministry,” an Algerian source said.

The source said the Defense Ministry budget increase also reflected
military modernization in the North African state. The $8 billion program included the procurement of Russian-origin Su-30MK fighter-jets, T-90S main battle tanks and Kilo-class submarines. Algeria has the largest military in North Africa with the exception of Egypt.

The Defense Ministry was assigned to take over the Municipal Guard, for
decades a CI force of nearly 100,000. The Algerian newspaper Tout
sur L’Algerie reported that the takeover would ensure the continuation of
the force, responsible for rural areas of Algeria and long plagued by poor
morale and corruption.

The source said the defense budget increase would help reorganize the
Municipal Guard as well as other forces. Under the latest budget, which
represents a 57 percent increase in spending since 2009, Algeria’s military
and security forces would receive higher salaries and enhanced benefits.

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1 Comment for “Algeria hikes military spending as Al Qaida threat rises”

  1. [...] “The increase is part of an expansion of the ministry into areas that had long been under the authority of the Interior Ministry,” an Algerian source was quoted as saying by the World Tribune. [...]

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