Algerian army kills 5 Islamist gunmen: Ministry

AFP , Saturday 11 Oct 2014

Algerian soldiers killed five Islamist gunmen Saturday not far from where the suspected hideout of jihadists who beheaded a French hostage was destroyed two days earlier, the defence ministry said.

"A detachment of soldiers on Saturday eliminated five terrorists in the Mount Mokrani area," a statement said.

Two Kalashnikov assault rifles, a semi-automatic pistol and ammunition were recovered, the ministry said.

On Thursday, the army announced it had destroyed a camp in the Djurdjura mountains, 150 kilometres (90 miles) southeast of the capital, believed to have been used by militants who beheaded 55-year-old French hiker Herve Gourdel last month.

Gourdel was kidnapped on September 21 by Jund al-Khilifa, or "Soldiers of the Caliphate," which has pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.

The army says close to 80 Islamist militants have been killed this year in Algeria.

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