Landmine kills Tunisian youth in closed military zone

Tunisian soldiers stand guard in the Mount Chaambi region where the army has been tracking Islamist militants on June 11, 2013 (AFP Photo/Abderrazek Khlifi)

Tunis (AFP) - A 19-year-old Tunisian was killed overnight by a landmine in the western border region where the army has been battling Islamist militants, an interior ministry source said on Wednesday.

The man "entered a closed military zone and was killed when a landmine exploded", the source said, without elaborating.

The incident came a day after six members of the Tunisian security forces were wounded by a roadside bombing in the mountainous Kef region, farther north.

A policeman was wounded in a similar blast on Sunday.

Since late 2012, security forces have been battling jihadists hiding out in the remote western region, parts of which were declared "zones closed for military operations" in April.

Numerous members of the security forces have been killed in the area, often by improvised landmines laid by the Islamists.

Last month, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb for the first time claimed responsibility for an attack in Tunisia, which has been rocked by Islamist violence since the 2011 revolution that toppled a decades-old dictatorship and touched off the Arab Spring.

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