The attack against the barrack of saphis, located at the city-center of Batna, in the night of 31 October to 1 November 1954, is probably the most important one, if not the most daring, led by a one of the groups of armed fighters, a few hours before at Dechrat Ouled Moussa, in the presence of Mostefa Benboulaid.
This tiny mountain hamlet was not located far from Arris, capital of the joint municipality of Aures and birthplace of Mostefa Benboulaid. That is why today, affirm the eyewitnesses interviewed by APS, the colonial authorities realized, at the sunrise, the "attack" came from Arris and its region.
The three eyewitnesses and participants in this operation, Belkacem Kadri Mohamed Lakhdar Benamor Biouche and Oucif Benmessaoud added: "As soon as the alarm was raised, military detachments were eager to seal the exists of the city while concentrating forces on the eastern exist on the trunk road Batna-Lambèse-Arris.
They were positioned at a place called Ouled Djer Aadi where they abandoned vehicles to comb the entire area in the hope of finding clues indicating the passage of the mujahideen," they said
The same witness added that once arrived around noon to Markounda, at the intersection of roads of Arris and Khenchela, French soldiers saw armed reinforcements coming from Arris.
"We stayed hidden in the hills of Tazoult for hours, watching the movements of the enemy," say these eyewitnesses.
Biouche remembers that immediately after this lightning storm, his group had withdrawn "without even knowing his group killed two or three of the sentinels of the barracks." They returned at the end of this decline, and Mohamed Bennadji and Mohamed Belbar where now stands Salah Eddine El Ayoubi (situated less than a kilometer from the gate of the barracks). They were with three other mujahideen in position to lend a hand when needed.
Besides, Biouche said added that the password was "Khaled-Uqba." The group, which gathered again after the operation, disappeared into the night and arrived at the refuge set up on the heights of Tazoult, the former Lambèse, at the daybreak.
The aim of the attack was to challenge the colonizer with a bang, say Biouche and his companions, sixty years after that night.
Their memories are intact despite the age and sometimes the disease (they approach their eighty-tenth birthday). The author of this action group was a stranger to the city. Some had never set foot; others had never even left their mountains.