Algerian troops on Monday killed a jihadist east of the capital, the defence ministry said, bringing to 12 the number of gunmen killed by security forces in a week.

The jihadist was killed during a military operation in Tadmait 80 kilometres outside Algiers, it said, two days after three others were killed in the same area.

The army killed a jihadist in El Oued further south near the Tunisian border on Saturday, it said, after killing six more in the desert area in a week.

Algerian police had also killed a jihadist wearing an explosives belt in the Tizi Ouzou area east of the capital on Wednesday, security sources said.

A total of "157 terrorists, including 10 commanders" were killed or arrested in military operations last year, according to the defence ministry.

A brutal civil war in the 1990s between the government and Islamists killed 200,000 people.

Despite adopting a peace and reconciliation charter in 2005 aimed at turning the page on the conflict, armed groups remain active in the centre and east of Algeria.

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