Mauritania sentences 3 al-Qaida suspects to death

NOUAKCHOTT, Mauritania—A court in Mauritania has condemned three alleged al-Qaida members to death, including the former leader of the African nation’s local terrorist network.

Chief judge Khayi Ould Mohamed issued the sentences late Wednesday in the capital, Nouakchott.

The former al-Qaida leader, El Khadim Ould Semene, was accused of helping organize an attack on the Israeli embassy here two years ago.

The two others sentenced included Semene’s deputies, Sidi Ould Sidna and Maarou Ould Haiba. Both had already received death sentences in May for involvement in the assassinations of four French tourists in 2007.

Mauritania, a predominantly moderate Muslim nation on Africa’s western coast, has been rocked in recent years by attacks by the North African al-Qaida group.

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