ADEN, Yemen (Reuters) - A Yemeni lieutenant colonel was killed on Wednesday by a bomb planted in his car, the state news agency said, the latest in a string of attacks on security officials blamed by government on Islamist insurgents.
The Saba news agency said the incident took place in al-Atiq, the capital of the volatile southern province of Shabwa, near the city's vegetable market.
The incident was Yemen's third assassination in as many days. On Tuesday a Yemeni air force officer was shot dead by gunmen in the capital Sanaa and on Monday, gunmen shot dead another colonel as he approached a busy intersection in Sanaa.
Dozens of Yemeni security and military officers have been assassinated in the past two years, many by bombs planted in their cars or in drive-by shootings, often blamed on al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula or affiliated groups.
Last month, at least one air force officer was killed and several others were wounded when a bomb tore through a bus carrying them to their base in Sanaa.
Stabilizing Yemen is important to Western and Gulf Arab states. Islamist militants have used areas beyond government control to plot attacks against international airliners and oil facilities.
(Reporting by Mohammed Mukhashaf; Writing by Yara Bayoumy; Editing by Angus McDowall and Ralph Boulton)