The Malian military says two soldiers were killed by an explosive device in the country's volatile north.

The government said in a news release that the attack occurred Sunday in Almoustrate, near the town of Bourem.

At least four others were wounded in the attack, which the government said was carried out by unknown elements.

A French-led force removed an al-Qaida branch and other jihadists from power across northern Mali in 2013, though remnants have staged a growing number of attacks in recent months.

A recent resurgence of violence has killed 21 U.N. peacekeepers since early September. French forces also are working to stabilize the country's former colony.