Nine security guards were killed in an attack on an engineering site near a coastal town east of Algiers late on Sunday, local witnesses and media said.
The attack took place in the commune of Ziama Mansouriah in the province of Jijel, 120 km (75 miles) from the Algerian capital, they said.
The security guards were working at a construction site run by SPAS under contract to state gas company Sonelgaz, the daily El Watan newspaper reported on its website.
Sonelgaz’s website says that SPAS provides security for the gas company’s sites and infrastructure across Algeria.
The El Watan website said two other people were injured in the attack which began when a mortar bomb was fired at the security guards’ quarters before the compound was assaulted by a large number of “terrorists”.
An Italian Foreign Ministry official said an attack took place near a site in Algeria where engineers from the Italian company Astaldi were working. An Astaldi source in Rome said none of the company’s workers were hurt.
Al Qaeda’s north African wing has claimed responsibility for several bombings in OPEC member Algeria in recent years.