Ivory Coast Arrests Two Soldiers for Links With al-Qaeda Attack

Ivory Coast arrested two military officials for links with al-Qaeda militants who carried out an attack at a beach in March during which 19 people were killed.

The soldiers are accused of having lived with the attackers and communicating with the driver of the vehicle who transported the militants, military prosecutor Ange Kessi told reporters Wednesday in Abidjan, the commercial capital. They were charged with breaching instructions for not denouncing the assailants to their superiors, he said.

The soldiers have denied that they knew the suspects were Islamists militants, he said.

Ivory Coast has arrested more than 15 people linked to the assault at Grand-Bassam, 44 kilometers (27 miles) east of Abidjan. Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb has killed more than 70 people since November in attacks targeting hotels in the Mali, Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast. The group, which operates out of northern Mali, has pledged to launch more attacks on countries that support military operations against them.