SUSPECTED AL-QAEDA GUNMEN IN MILITARY UNIFORMS ATTACK LOCAL GOVERNMENT BUILDING IN YEMEN

ADEN, Suspected al-Qaeda gunmen, wearing military uniforms, launched an armed attack against the local government building, in the southern province of Lahj on Monday, killing 10 soldiers and injuring several others, a security official said.

"A suicide bomber slammed his explosive-laden car into the the local government headquarters' main entrance, and then suspected al-Qaeda attackers tried to storm the building by hurling grenades at the guards," said the local security source.

The security source, based in Lahj, said, the attackers disguised themselves as army soldiers and attacked the local authority building from various directions, triggering an hour-long gun battle in the area.

Civilians were injured during the armed confrontations, which occurred in and around the local government building, in Lahj's provincial capital of Houta city, according to witnesses.

Lahj's governor's spokesman, confirmed the armed attack in a text message, saying that, "the terrorist attack was successfully foiled and the newly-trained security forces are now tracking the assailants."

Other sources said, "the attackers most likely were planning to target the Governor of Lahj, Dr. Nasser Khobagi, but he wasn't inside the building at the time of the attack."

The al-Qaeda militant group, which lost several of its commanders in recent American air strikes, has yet to comment about the attack, on Lahj's local government headquarters.

Yemen, an impoverished Arab country, has been gripped by one of the most active regional Al-Qaeda insurgencies in the Middle East.

The Yemen-based Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) group, also known locally as "Ansar al-Sharia," emerged in Jan, 2009, claimed responsibility for a number of terrorist attacks, against Yemen's army and governmental institutions.

The AQAP and the Daesh-linked terrorists took advantage of the security vacuum and ongoing civil war to expand their influence, by seizing more territories in southern Yemen.

Security in Yemen has deteriorated since Mar, 2015, when war broke out between the Shiite Houthi group, supported by former President, Ali Abdullah Saleh, and government forces, backed by a Saudi-led Arab coalition.

Over 10,000 people have been killed, in ground battles and air strikes since then, many of them civilians.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK