Qaeda claims seizing Yemeni army base

2015-02-12 16:23
Shi'ite rebels chant slogans in Sanaa, Yemen. (Hani Mohammed, AP)

Shi'ite rebels chant slogans in Sanaa, Yemen. (Hani Mohammed, AP)

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Sana'a - An al-Qaeda offshoot in Yemen on Thursday claimed to have seized a government army base in the southern part of the volatile country.

The al-Qaeda-linked Ansar al-Sharia (Partisans of Sharia) said in a Twitter statement that its insurgents had fully controlled the 19th Infantry Brigade in the southern province of Shabwa after an attack.

The militant Sunni group accused the Yemeni army of alliance with Shi’ite Houthi forces, a sworn enemy of al-Qaeda.

Tribal sources in Shabwa said Ansar al-Sharia fighters had captured the base after a gun battle with government troops, leaving a soldier and an insurgent dead.

There was no comment from the army.

Yemen has been in turmoil in recent months after the Houthis controlled the capital Sana'a and swept across the country, exploiting the weakness of the central government.

On Friday, the Houthis dissolved parliament and instituted an interim constitution, a move condemned by the country's Sunni majority.

The turmoil has promoted the United States, Britain and France to announce closing their embassies and evacuating their diplomats from Yemen.
Read more on:    al-qaeda  |  yemen  |  security

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