Algeria's justice minister says the army killed one of the militants responsible for the beheading of a French hiker in September.

Tayeb Louh told journalists Wednesday that the militant was killed during a military operation in October. A later investigation revealed his identity.

Herve Gourdel, 55, was hiking in Algeria's Djurdjura mountains when he was kidnapped by militants who beheaded him on video when France did not end its participation in the air campaign against the Islamic State in Iraq.

The group calls itself the Jund al-Khilafah, or "Soldiers of the Caliphate," and split from al-Qaida to pledge allegiance to the Islamic State group.

The Algerian army combed the mountains where the beheading took place, killing several militants and finding the campsite where the video was shot.