[QODLink]
Middle East

Gunmen take over military compound in Yemen

Dozens of unidentified gunmen capture Yemeni army compound in port city of al-Mukalla, killing at least three troops.

Last Modified: 30 Sep 2013 14:12
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback

Dozens of unidentified gunmen have captured a Yemeni army compound in the southeast of the Arabian peninsula country, a military official said.

At least three soldiers were killed and six others wounded in the fighting on Monday as the attackers wrested control of the army compound in the port city of al-Mukalla.

Officials said the gunmen were since holding an unknown number of soldiers hostage.

"Some of the attackers managed to infiltrate into the base," the official said.

They caused confusion because soldiers at the base thought they were being attacked by members of the Central Security apparatus

Yemeni military officia 

"They caused confusion because soldiers at the base thought they were being attacked by members of the Central Security apparatus."

Witnesses told Al Jazeera the unidentified gunmen were dressed in special forces uniforms and drew up in four military vehicles, stormed the compound  taking many more soldiers hostage. Security officials allege the gunmen were suspected al-Qaeda fighters, though local sources said the fighters were more likely soldiers and the fighting was part of a feud between two army units.

There have been problems between two army units over the last two years in Mukalla and this incident might be part of this feud, sources said.

The commander of the army's second military region, General Muhsen Hasan, was in the building at the time of the attack, and is thought to have been captured.

Army reinforcements have been deployed to the area and have engaged the rebels, the official said, warning that the gunmen would "pay a heavy price" for the attack.

Mukalla is capital of Yemen's southeastern province of Hadramawt and a major port city.

It is the second major assault on the Yemeni army in 10 days blamed on al-Qaeda in 10 days.

Mukalla is the capital of Yemen's southeastern province of Hadramawt and a major port city.

On September 20, suspected al-Qaeda fighters killed at least 56 soldiers and police in coordinated dawn attacks in Shabwa province further west.

That was the deadliest day for the Yemeni security forces since the army recaptured a string of southern towns from the jihadists in a major offensive last year.

Washington regards al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula as the most dangerous affiliate and has stepped up its drone strikes against the group in recent weeks.

406

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Lack of child protection laws means abandoned and orphaned kids rely heavily on the care of strangers.
Featured
Booming global trade in 50-million-year-old amber stones is lucrative, controversial, and extremely dangerous.
Legendary Native-American High Bird was trained in ancient warrior traditions, which he employed in World War II.
Hounded opposition figure says he's hoping for the best at sodomy appeal but prepared to return to prison.
Fears of rising Islamophobia and racial profiling after two soldiers killed in separate incidents.
Group's culture of summary justice is back in Northern Ireland's spotlight after new sexual assault accusations.