SANAA (Reuters) - A Russian aid worker working for the International Committee of the Red Cross was shot and wounded by unidentified gunmen in the Yemeni capital on Tuesday, a security official said.

"The foreign worker was in the car of an international organization when she was shot in one of Sanaa's streets," the official said, adding that the woman was in critical condition.

No further details were immediately available.

Yemen is awash with arms and law and order is weak. The country is grappling with a powerful branch of al Qaeda, armed tribesmen and an increasing secessionist sentiment in the south.

Yemen's stability is a priority for the United States and its Gulf Arab allies because of its strategic position next to oil exporter Saudi Arabia and shipping lanes.

(Reporting by Mohammed Ghobari; Writing by Mahmoud Habboush; Editing by Alistair Lyon)