(Updates death toll)
ADEN, June 26 Six suspected al Qaeda fighters,
six soldiers and a civilian woman were killed in a series of
militant attacks in the eastern Yemeni city of Seiyun on
Thursday, local officials said.
A suicide bomber drove his explosives-laden car into the
entrance of an army base, killing four soldiers in the city in
Hadramawt province - a territory with some of the country's
dwindling oil reserves. Another militant was killed in clashes
At around the same time, four militants and two soldiers
were killed in a raid on the city's airport before forces
regained control of the facility. A civilian woman was also
killed in an attack at a nearby agricultural plant.
Washington and Gulf countries are worried that further
instability in Yemen could allow Al Qaeda in the Arabian
Peninsula (AQAP), the Islamist group's regional wing, to
consolidate its position and launch attacks overseas.
AQAP and allied local Islamists have staged attacks on
government forces across the country, including many
assassinations and car bombs in Hadramawt.
The province and other parts of the former nation of South
Yemen have also been rocked by mass protests by a separatist
Seiyun's airport only had two scheduled flights on Thursday,
one to Yemen's capital Sanaa and the other to Jeddah in Saudi
Arabia, according to flightstats.com.
(Reporting by Mohammed Mukhashaf; Writing by Noah Browning;
Editing by Andrew Roche)