A total of five soldiers were killed and two others wounded when a suicide car bomber targeted a Yemeni commander’s convoy in the southern province of Abyan on Friday, a military official told Xinhua.
“A suicide bomber, who was driving an explosives-laden vehicle, attacked the motorcade of Abdul-Rahman Shnini, the Special Security Forces commander in Abyan Province, killing five of his guards,” the local military official said on condition of anonymity.
The suicide attack that took place near the coastal city of Shuqra apparently aimed at assassinating the commander, but he survived with a slight injury only, the source added.
The source confirmed that security forces had arrived at the site, and a number of military vehicles were securing the area.
The suicide attack comes just one day after a similar car bomb explosion by al-Qaeda injured 10 Yemeni officers and soldiers in Abyan’s district of Mudiya.
Al-Qaeda militants are intensifying their drive-by attacks on security checkpoints in the Yemeni southern provinces as UAE-backed government forces increase military operations against their hideouts in the war-plagued Arab country.
Last month, Yemeni government forces and the UAE armed forces operating in the southern province of Aden launched a new anti-terror offensive “to root out al-Qaeda militants from their strongholds in neighboring southern province of Abyan.”
Thousands of southern recruits joined the campaign after receiving military training and financial support from the UAE forces.
The ongoing anti-terror campaign has dislodged al-Qaeda militants from several villages in Abyan, with more than 50 of them arrested and moved to prisons in Aden.