Drone kills seven suspected al Qaeda members in Yemen: sources


world
 Drone kills seven suspected al Qaeda members in Yemen: sources

In this April 23, 2013 file photo, a suspected Yemeni al-Qaida militant, center, holds an Islamist banner as he stands behind bars during a court hearing in state security court in Sanaa, Yemen. A top leader of Yemen's al-Qaida branch has claimed responsibility for last week's attack on a Paris newspaper when two masked gunmen killed 12 people, including much of the weekly's editorial staff and two police officers. Nasr al-Ansi, a top commander of Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP as the branch is known, appeared in an 11-minute Internet video posted Wednesday, Jan. 14, 2015.

Seven suspected al Qaeda militants were killed by a drone strike in central Yemen on Wednesday, residents and local officials said.

The strikes hit two cars carrying armed individuals in al-Bayda province, the sources said.

U.S. forces have repeatedly launched drone and air strikes against Yemen's al Qaeda branch, known as Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

The group has taken advantage of a more than two-year-old civil war between the Iran-aligned Houthi group and President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi's Saudi-backed government to strengthen its position in the impoverished country.

AQAP operates in several provinces in southern and eastern Yemen, including in Abyan, Shabwa and al-Bayda.

(Reporting by Ali Abdelaty; Writing by Maha El Dahan; Editing by Andrew Roche)

By: Reuters

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