ALGIERS: Algerian troops killed five Islamist gunmen east of the capital Friday, the defence ministry said, in the latest deadly violence to rock the restive Boumerdes province this month.
The militants died in clashes that broke out at 0600 GMT in a wooded area overlooking the town of Dellys and last for about three and a half hours, El-Watan reported separately, citing local sources.
"This operation, which took place after relevant information was obtained, reflects the determination and perseverance of the army to clean the country of these criminals," the ministry said.
It is the latest in a string of attacks in the restive region, where Al-Qaeda forces are active, which have left at least nine Islamists and two soldiers dead.
The previous incident was on Sunday evening, when an army ambush killed two militants in the Baghlia area of Boumerdes.
Violence attributed to Islamists has declined considerably in Algeria in recent years, after a decade of appalling blood-letting during the civil war of the 1990s.
But groups affiliated with Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb continue to attack security forces in the eastern Kabylie region, in areas around the capital and in the south.