The Algerian military Tuesday killed a top-notch terrorist, Gouri Abdelmalek, whose group, Jund al Khilafa, beheaded French hiker Herve Gourdel earlier this year, the Algeria Press Service reported.
The report claimed Abdelmalek and two other militants were entrapped by the military.
Abdelmalek's group displayed their support for ISIS by releasing a video showing the beheading of Gourdel.
Gourdel, 55, was hiking in central Algeria's Djudjura National Park when he was abducted in September. Jund al Khilafa, having just declared allegiance to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), then published a video of Gourdel's beheading on September 24.
Until he openly declared support for ISIS, Abdelmalek was the commander of AQIM's central region. Abdelmalek in September announced that his fighters were abandoning AQIM because of "the certain deviation of the methods of the mother organization al-Qaeda, and that of the Islamic Maghreb."
Abdelmalek had been active in a militant Islamist insurgency in Algeria for 14 years.