At least 60 people have been killed in clashes between the government troops and al-Qaida fighters in Yemen’s city of Loder, 250 km from Sanaa.
A government official in Loder told AFP that the fighting broke out after al-Qaida militants attacked a military base near the southern city of Loder on Monday morning.
Security official told Xinhua news by phone that 40 al-Qaida fighters were killed in the clashes. Additionally, 18 soldiers, including a colonel, perished. Six civilians allied with the army were also reported killed.
Meanwhile, an American drone attack killed 24 suspected al-Qaida fighters in southern Yemen at the weekend, the AP reported. An official said the dawn raid targeted militant hideouts in the al-Arqoub area east of Zinjibar, capital of Abyan province.
In March of 2011, al-Qaida operating in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP ) announced Yemen's Abyan province as an "Islamic emirate". The statement was issued by the group and posted on the internet. "From now on, women who go out to the markets need to be accompanied by a relative, who carry a proof by identity cards, or passports," it said.
More as it becomes available.