ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) _ A pregnant woman and three of her children were shot and killed at a roadblock set up by an armed group, Algerian media reported Saturday.

The woman, her husband and their four children were returning home to Algiers from a beach outing Friday when a group of armed men opened fire on their car, the daily newspaper Liberte reported. The attack occurred near El-Aouana, about 225 miles east of Algiers, the capital.

The father, a 46-year-old professor at the University of Algiers, was shot in the stomach and head. He remained in critical condition at a hospital in Jijel, the newspaper reported.

One child, a seven-year-old girl, managed to escape the gunmen. Her mother and three siblings, ages 18 months to 14 years, were shot to death, the report said.

This North African country is plagued by violence despite a peace drive by President Abdelaziz Bouteflika. Some 100,000 people have died since 1992, when military-backed authorities canceled an election that a now-banned Islamic party was expected to win, triggering an Islamic insurgency.