Colombian authorities say rebels killed seven soldiers and wounded three others in an ambush in the country's remote coca-growing southwest.

The top security official for Narino state, Fabio Trujillo, tells The Associated Press that a patrol of 32 troops was ambushed in the municipality of Samaniego early Sunday.

The town is in a major drug-producing region where the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, drug gangs and far-right militias all have a presence.

Colombian authorities blamed the attack on FARC rebels, who have been put on the defensive in recent years by Colombia's U.S.-backed military but have killed more than 100 soldiers this year.