People gather at the scene near an explosion at a weapons warehouse in the city of Lawdar in Yemen's southern province of Abyan, July 5, 2022. (PHOTO / AFP)
ADEN, Yemen – Gunmen of the Yemen-based al-Qaeda branch targeted military vehicles of the country's government forces in the southern province of Abyan on Friday, a military official told Xinhua.
"Four military vehicles of the government forces were targeted by two explosions of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) detonated remotely by al-Qaeda gunmen in Abyan's district of Mudiyah," the local military official said on condition of anonymity.
Scores of al-Qaeda militants frequently use hit-and-run tactics against Yemeni government forces while hiding out in rocky terrains and mountainous areas
The official confirmed that one of the IEDs explosions struck a military vehicle, killing three soldiers and wounding five others at the scene.
"The al-Qaeda militants set up an ambush and attempted to attack the government soldiers following the explosions," he said. An intense armed confrontation took place between the al-Qaeda assailants and the government soldiers after the explosion, he added.
Last month, military units of the Southern Transitional Council, which is a part of Yemen's government, announced they were launching "a qualitative anti-terror operation and succeeded in raiding a key hideout of al-Qaeda in Abyan."
Scores of al-Qaeda militants frequently use hit-and-run tactics against Yemeni government forces while hiding out in rocky terrains and mountainous areas of Abyan and other neighboring provinces.
The Yemen-based al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula network has exploited years of deadly conflict between the Yemeni government and the Houthi militia to expand its presence in the war-ravaged Arab country. It has carried out many high-profile attacks against the security forces in the country's southern provinces.