Islamic militants killed six soldiers including a gendarme in two separate attacks, east of the capital, a security source and a local witness told Reuters.
The first attack took place on Sunday at around 10:30 a.m. in the region of Lakhdaria, 75 km east of Algiers. One gendarme was killed and a second one wounded, a security source who asked not to be named told Reuters.
“I can confirm that there has been an attack against gendarmes this morning. One has been killed … ,” the security source said.
The second attack took place 30 minutes after the first in Amal, in the region of Boumerdes, a local witness told Reuters. Five soldiers and two Islamist rebels were killed during the clash, the witness said, Reuters reports.
On Friday, the deadliest by militants in months killed 13 soldiers in the Kabylie region, considered as a stronghold for Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.
Al Qaeda’s north African wing, formerly known as the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat (GSPC), has claimed responsibility for a string of bombings and attacks in the OPEC member country in recent years.
The group is the remnants of a much bigger insurgency that waged civil war in Algeria in the 1990s in which an estimated 200,000 people were killed. The violence has largely subsided after the government offered successive amnesties to encourage rebels to disarm.