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Yemen army says 18 al-Qaeda militants killed

Army units have been reinforcing the city over fears of al-Qaeda attacks, which has a powerful presence in the south

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Yemen’s Defense Ministry says that the army has repulsed an assault by al-Qaeda militants near a southern city, killing 18 of them and losing two soldiers.

The statement said the militants attacked an army battalion as it was making its way to the Sayoun, in the southern province of Hadramawt, adding that an undisclosed number were arrested, including Saudi nationals.

Army units have been reinforcing the city over fears of attacks by al-Qaeda, which has a powerful presence in the southern region of the country.

In the spring, the military waged a wide offensive against al-Qaeda’s strongholds in the south and destroyed a number of the group’s training camps in mountains.