[QODLink]
Middle East
Yemeni soldiers killed in suicide blast
At least four die as bomber detonates vehicle laden with explosives near a checkpoint south of the country.
Last Modified: 14 Mar 2012 02:30
President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi vowed to restore security across the impoverished nation [AFP]

At least four Yemeni soldiers were killed when a suicide bomber detonated a vehicle laden with explosives near a checkpoint in the south of the country, a police source said.

Ansar al-Sharia, an al-Qaeda linked group claimed responsibility for the attack on Tuesday and put the number of soldiers killed at 27. In a text message purporting to come from the group, it said three of its own fighters had also been killed.

The bombing is the latest in a spate of attacks by Islamist fighters, who have escalated their operations in the country's south since President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi took office last month vowing to fight al Qaeda's regional wing.

At least four soldiers were wounded in the attack outside the southern city of al-Bayda, the police source told Reuters news agency. The governor of al-Bayda province said clashes between the army and "terrorists" erupted after the explosion.

Interior ministry statement

The attack came hours after the interior ministry issued a statement warning of "a terrorist plot by al-Qaeda to target vital installations and government facilities in several provinces".

Live Box 20121885142889809

Fighters linked to al-Qaeda exploited months of pro-democracy protests last year to grab swathes of territory in the southern part of the country.

Fighters from Ansar al-Sharia earlier this month launched a wave of co-ordinated attacks on government forces outside
Zinjibar, capital of the province of Abyan, killing at least 110 soldiers.

At least 59 anti-government fighters were killed in a series of air strikes last week.

Ansar al-Sharia said Tuesday's attack was in revenge for the air strikes on al-Bayda and Abyan provinces, which it blamed on US drones.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Muslim volunteers face questioning and threat of arrest, while aid has been disrupted or blocked, charities say.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
ISIL combatants seeking an 'exit strategy' from Mideast conflict need positive reinforcement back home, analysts say.
European nation hit by a wave of Islamophobia as many young fighters join ISIL in Syria and Iraq.
Featured
Lacking cohesive local ground forces to attack in tandem, coalition air strikes will have limited effect, experts say.
Hindu right-wing groups run campaign against what they say is Muslim conspiracy to convert Hindu girls into Islam.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
Muslim caretakers maintain three synagogues in eastern Indian city, which was once home to a thriving Jewish community.
Amid fresh ISIL gains, officials in Anbar province have urged the Iraqi government to request foreign ground troops.