Alwaght-Tunisian security forces have killed a local ringleader of ISIS terrorist group who was plotting attacks during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.
In a statement on Monday, the country's interior ministry the unnamed suspect was a leading member of ISIS and "dangerous" and was killed in an operation Sunday night by the National Guard near the Algerian border.
Judiciary spokesman Sofiene Sliti told Shems FM radio the suspect was a Tunisian known as Houssem Tlithi, born in 1997.
The interior ministry said the suspect had been on the run since 2014 and hiding in the Mount Salloum region, an extremist stronghold.
Mount Salloum is near Mount Chambi where 15 soldiers were killed in 2014 in the deadliest attack against the armed forces.
During Sunday night's operation, another extremist was wounded and weapons seized, including a Kalashnikov assault rifle and material used to make explosive belts.
The interior ministry said they were to be used for "terrorist" attacks during the Muslim Holy Month of Ramadan, which started Saturday.
Since its 2011 revolution, Tunisia has experienced an increase in terrorist attacks that have cost the lives of dozens of members of the security forces and also 59 foreign tourists.
Despite a halt to major attacks, the country has been under a state of emergency since November 2015, when a suicide bombing in Tunis claimed by ISIS killed 12 presidential guards.
Last December Tunisia’s interior minister, Hedi Majdoub, told parliament that 800 Tunisian nationals who had travelled abroad to fight for armed groups in other countries have returned to Tunisia.
The United Nations estimates that there are more than 5,000 Tunisians fighting for armed groups, mainly in Iraq, Syria and neighboring Libya.
Tunisia's security forces have urged the government to adopt "exceptional measures" to deal with potential security threats from fighters who have returned to their home country.