Bookmark and Share

Open the online Arabic language course

Arabic: 'al-jabha 'al-'islāmiyya li-l-'inqādh
French: Armé Islamique du Salut
In English: Islamic Salvation Front

In Algeria, during the Algerian Civil War (1992-1999), a militant Islamist group acting 1993-1999.
AIS was the armed wing of FIS, and should not be confused with the far more brutal GIA. The leadership was from first of acting from the Small Kabylia Mountains right southeast of Jijel.
Officially, the AIS did not kill foreigners, innocent civilians, journalists, women and children, and AIS claimed only to be killing representatives for the Algerian government and regime.
About 1997, AIS was said to have had 4,000 men dispersed in small groups in the mountainous regions north in Algeria. The estimates in 1999 were at 3,000.

1993: While most of the needed information still is difficult to get across, there is good reason to assume that AIS this year was organized due to a conflict between FIS and GIA, after that GIA escalated their terror acts.
1994: Islamic Armed Movement (MIA) joins the AIS, and is followed by a few small armed groups, like the MEI (XXX).
— Abdelkader Chebouti, coming from MIA, becomes the first leader of the united AIS.
November: Madani Mezrag of MEI becomes new leader of AIS.
End of year: AIS controls 50% of the fighters or more in most of northern Algeria, with the region around Algiers as an exception where GIA dominated.
1995: AIS and FIS is claiming that they do not participate in any killings of innocent foreigners or Algerian civilians.
1996 December: AIS leader for central Algeria, Azzedine Baa, is killed by GIA.
1997 January: GIA declares AIS an enemy.
1997 October 1: AIS begins a unilateral ceasefire, in order to show how GIA terrorized Algerian civilian population.
1999 June 12: Together with FIS, AIS approves a peace accord with the Algerian government, resulting in its disorganization. Many of the AIS guerilla joins the Algerian army.
2000 January 11: Final disbandment of AIS.

By Tore Kjeilen