Militants attack Yemeni police, killing four

Reuters News
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Posted: Aug 01, 2012 11:42 AM
Militants attack Yemeni police, killing four

ADEN (Reuters) - Militants attacked a police station in Yemen's southern city of Jaar late on Tuesday, killing four policemen and injuring one, security sources said on Wednesday.

The ministry of defense website said around 20 men from a group called Ansar al-Sharia attacked the building and police were now hunting them. A security source told Reuters the death toll had risen from two to four, with one policeman injured.

An official said earlier that the men had attacked the police station while riding motor bikes.

Ansar al-Sharia, which swears allegiance to al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, seized control of several cities in Abyan province last year during a wave of protests that forced former President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down.

Yemen's army drove militants from the strategic city of Jaar and the provincial capital of Zinjibar in June, and Tuesday's incident would be Ansar al-Sharia's first shooting attack in Jaar since then, the official said.

The military offensive was seen as a breakthrough in a U.S.-backed drive to secure stability in the region. However, some residents of Jaar have said armed members of Ansar al-Sharia still roam freely in the city.

(Reporting by Mohammed Mukhashaff; Writing by Amena Bakr; Editing by Tim Pearce)