At least six soldiers of government forces were killed in Yemen’s southern province of Abyan in an attack by al-Qaeda militants. A military officer gave this information to the media.
“Al-Qaeda gunmen carried out a large-scale attack on units of government forces stationed in Wadi Omran and Mudiyah districts of Abyan province,” the official said on Tuesday.
He said the attack continued for several hours, killing six soldiers and wounding five others. He added that several al-Qaeda terrorists were also reportedly killed during the clashes.
He said the attack came amid an increase in al-Qaeda operations in several parts of Abyan over the past several weeks, Xinhua news agency reported.
Locals said the terrorists had come from the neighbouring provinces of Shabwa and Al-Bayda, which are believed to be strongholds of the militant group.
The military escalation highlights the continuing security threats posed by the Yemeni faction of al-Qaeda, called Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).
With peace talks stalled, the conflict between Houthi rebels and the Yemeni government backed by a Saudi Arabia-led coalition shows no signs of abating.
Extremist groups are on the rise in Yemen’s civil war, posing a serious security threat to Yemen.