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Algerian soldiers killed in suspected Islamist attack

AFP

Eleven soldiers were killed in an overnight ambush carried out by suspected Islamists in a wooded region southwest of the Algerian capital, El Khaber newspaper reported Saturday on its website.

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There was no immediate confirmation of the incident from the defence ministry, but it was widely circulated on websites and social media.

The ambush took place on Friday night at the start of the Eid al-Fitr holidays marking the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

El Khaber, which cited security sources, said it took place on the road to Tifran, a wooded area south of Ain Defla, 140 kilometres (85 miles) from the capital.

It said the assailants targeted an army unit headed for an advance post in the bush and managed to flee before reinforcements arrived.

Ain Defla was a bastion of armed groups in the 1990s when Islamist-linked violence rocked Algeria. The unrest has since waned.

But the defence ministry said last week that more than 100 armed Islamists have been killed, captured or have repented in the first half of 2015.

More than 100 Islamists were killed last year, according to the army.

(AFP)

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