Tunisia policeman shot dead in beach massacre town

A tourist sits near flowers placed after a gunman killed 39 foreigners in Sousse, Tunisia, in June 2015.
A tourist sits near flowers placed after a gunman killed 39 foreigners in Sousse, Tunisia, in June 2015.REUTERS

TUNIS (AFP) - A Tunisian policeman was shot dead Wednesday by two assailants on a motorbike in the coastal resort of Sousse where an Islamic militant gunman killed 38 tourists in June, a senior security official said.

"Unknown assailants fired on three policemen on a road. One of them was hit and died in hospital," Rafik Chelly, secretary of state for national security, told AFP.

"An investigation is under way. We can't say any more," said Chelly, without being able to clarify if the attack was the work of militants.

Wataniya television, the national broadcaster, said the two other policemen targeted in the town of Sousse were wounded.

The attack came less than two months after a militant gunman killed 30 Britons and eight other foreign tourists on a beach in Sousse, in an attack claimed by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group.

Tunisia has been under a state of emergency in the wake of the June 26 massacre which followed an attack by gunmen on the Bardo museum in Tunis that killed 21 foreign tourists and a policeman.

ISIS also claimed responsibility for the March 18 museum attack, and extra troops have been posted at tourist sites since the beach killings.

Tunisia has since its 2011 revolution faced an upsurge in extremist violence that has cost the lives of dozens of soldiers and police, with most attacks claimed by Al-Qaeda's North African branch.