AFP
Last updated: 22 March, 2015

Soldier killed by jihadi mine in western Tunisia

A Tunisian soldier was killed and two others injured Sunday when their vehicle hit a landmine "planted by terrorist elements" in a mountainous western region near the Algerian border, the defence ministry said.

“A mine exploded under their vehicle,” ministry spokesman Belhassen Oueslati told AFP, declining to name the exact location where he said a military operation was “ongoing”.

“The mine was planted by terrorist elements,” he added.

The incident comes as the country is on high alert after gunmen killed 20 foreign tourists and a policeman at the country’s national museum on Wednesday, in an attack claimed by the Islamic State group.

Since its 2011 revolution, Tunisia has seen a rise in Islamist extremism. For the past two years, the army has been hunting Al-Qaeda-linked jihadists who are active in the border area.

Deadly ambushes on the police and army are common in the region, where cross-border smuggling of fuel and food is also rife.