Sudan's government says its forces have killed six people who were allegedly involved in the kidnapping of a group of tourists in Egypt.

Officials say the army has arrested two others in the Jebel Oweinat region near the Libyan border.

They say the 11 European tourists and eight Egyptians are still being held by other  kidnappers, and are now believed to be in Chad.

The tourists were abducted 10 days ago during a desert expedition in southwestern Egypt. The region borders Sudan and Libya, and is also near Chad.

Libyan officials said Friday an extensive search for the hostages showed they are not on Libyan soil.

Egyptian officials have said the German government is in contact with the kidnappers, who are said to be asking for about $9 million in ransom.

The identity of the kidnappers remains unclear.  

Kidnappings of foreigners are rare in Egypt, although militants have killed many people in bombings and shootings at tourist sites.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.