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Tunisia army clashes with militants: ministry

Tunisian soldiers patrol a street during a visit of the prime minister in Ben Guerdane on March 13, 2016, a week after jihadists launched a wave of attacks on army and police posts in the border town. FATHI NASRI / AFP

Tunisian soldiers patrol a street during a visit of the prime minister in Ben Guerdane on March 13, 2016, a week after jihadists launched a wave of attacks on army and police posts in the border town.<br />FATHI NASRI / AFP

The Tunisian army fought militants in the west of the country on Saturday in clashes that left a soldier wounded, the defence ministry said.

“A soldier was wounded during an exchange of fire Saturday morning between army units and a terrorist group at Jabal Samama” in the Kasserine region, Lieutenant Colonel Belhassen Oueslati told AFP.

In a separate incident, the interior ministry said three gunmen had opened fire overnight on a police outpost along the border with Algeria.

“There was an exchange of fire between security forces at the post and terrorists before the attackers fled,” the ministry said in a statement, adding that no one was injured in that incident.

Tunisia has failed to curb a rise in extremism since the 2011 revolution that ousted longtime dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali.

Last year, the Islamic State jihadist group claimed attacks on the Bardo museum in Tunis and a popular resort hotel, killing 59 tourists in total, and the suicide bombing of a bus that killed 12 presidential guards.

Earlier this month, jihadists launched a wave of deadly attacks on army and police posts in a town near the Libyan border.

Thousands of Tunisians have signed up to fight abroad with extremist groups.



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