Unknown gunmen killed a pro- government and anti-al-Qaida militia leader in Yemen’s southern province of Abyan on Saturday afternoon, a provincial security official told Xinhua.
The unknown attackers riding motorbikes opened fire on the high- ranking leader of the anti-al-Qaida militiamen, Ali Amanas, on the outskirts of Abyan, killing him on the spot, the official said on condition of anonymity.
The gunmen fled the scene and their whereabouts are not known yet, according to the source.
Gunmen from the al-Qaida terrorist group often target tribal fighters who joined the government-backed militiamen in the country’s southern regions.
The al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), entrenching itself mainly in Yemen’s southern provinces of Abyan and Shabwa, is on the terrorist list of the United States.
The Yemeni-based al-Qaida wing, which emerged in January 2009, is considered the most strategic threat to the Yemeni government and its neighboring oil-rich Saudi Arabia.