Alleged U.S. drone strike in Yemen kills 5 al-Qaeda militants

Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) is the deadliest branch of the global militant organization and has taken advantage of a war pitting Houthi militiamen against forces loyal to exiled President Hadi. (Reuters)

A suspected U.S. drone strike has killed five al-Qaeda fighters in eastern Yemen on Wednesday, officials said, as extremist groups claimed a string of attacks in the war-torn country.

The officials said the bombs hit the men in their car while they were traveling on a coast road east of the Arabian Sea port of Mukalla, which was occupied by al-Qaeda fighters in April after security forces retreated.

Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) is the deadliest branch of the global militant organization and has taken advantage of a war pitting Houthi militiamen against forces loyal to exiled President Abdrabbu Mansour Hadi to grab territory and operate more openly.

The chaos has also given rise to a Yemeni branch of the hardline ISIS group, which on Tuesday claimed responsibility for a bomb planted near a police car in the capital Sanaa. No one was hurt in the blast.

Al-Qaeda on Tuesday said it carried out 12 separate gun and bomb attacks on Houthi fighters in the central province on al-Baida.

It was immediately possible to confirm the claims.

The Houthis are a Shiite Muslim sect and both al-Qaeda and ISIS consider the Iran-allied Houthis apostates.

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Last Update: 05:39 KSA 08:39 - GMT 05:39
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