Five operatives of the Yemen-based al-Qaeda branch were killed, when a U.S. drone strike, targeted their vehicle, in Yemen's central province of al-Bayda on Tuesday, a military official said.

The military source confirmed that missiles fired from the unmanned U.S. aircraft, destroyed a vehicle carrying al-Qaeda operatives, in the mountains of Radaa area, in central al-Bayda province.

The military source said, "The slain al-Qaeda men were apparently travelling from Marib province, heading to meet their comrades in the al-Bayda province."

Scores of the al-Qaeda gunmen launched numerous armed attacks against positions of army troops, loyal to the Shiite Houthi group, in al-Bayda province, in the past few days, according to the Yemeni source.

On Tuesday, the United States announced that its military killed 13 al-Qaeda militants in three separate strikes in Yemen in recent weeks, but it did not specify how the strikes were conducted or reveal the identities of the militants targeted.

The U.S. drones have been active over skies of Yemeni cities since years ago, launching hundreds of air strikes that killed scores of al-Qaeda leaders and many other extremists.

Yemen has recently seen a growing number of al-Qaeda activities in the eastern and southern provinces, due to the prolonged security vacuum, resulting from the 19-month civil war between the exiled government and Houthi rebels, who seized much of the country's north, including the capital, Sanaa, since 2014.

The military conflict has left more than 6,400 dead, according to the UN, displaced thousands and left the country's civilians facing a catastrophic humanitarian crisis.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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