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Al-Qaeda Finds Foothold In Tunisian Poverty

A report from Kasserine, an unlikely incubator for Islamic extremism.
Tunisian army vehicles are deployed in Kasserine, the regional capital of the western region of Mount Chaambi, on May 7, 2013, as soldiers continue their hunt for a jihadist group hiding out in the the border region with Algeria. Tunisian authorities recognised that two jihadist groups which the army has been hunting on the Algerian border have links to Al-Qaeda, stressing their determination to take them out. AFP PHOTO / ABDERRAZEK KHLIFI        (Photo credit should read ABDERRAZEK KHLIFI

KASSERINE, Tunisia — When the Tunisian government was forced by popular pressure to appoint a new interior minister in March, they chose Lotfi Ben Jeddou, a well-respected public prosecutor from one of the country's poorest and most marginalized cities, Kasserine.

When he took office, Ben Jeddou had no way of knowing that his first serious challenge as head of Tunisian security would come from just outside of his home town.

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