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Al-Qaeda militants kill at least 20 in attack on UAE-trained Yemeni force Open in fullscreen

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Al-Qaeda militants kill at least 20 in attack on UAE-trained Yemeni force

Two attacks shook Aden the day before al-Qaeda killed 20 in a southern province [Anadolu/Getty]

Date of publication: 2 August, 2019

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Al-Qaeda militants targeted members of a force trained by the United Arab Emirates - a member of the Saudi-led intervention in the Yemeni conflict.
Yemeni officials and tribal leaders say al-Qaeda militants targeted a military camp in southern Abyan province, killing at least 20 troops.

The militants attacked the camp with rocket propelled grenades and automatic rifles around midnight, setting off clashes that lasted until early morning on Friday.

The troops targeted are members of a force trained by the United Arab Emirates, a member of the Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthi rebels since 2015.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not allowed to talk to reporters. The tribal leaders asked to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation.

Al-Qaeda's Yemen branch has exploited the chaos of Yemen's civil war. The attack came a day after Yemen's southern city of Aden was hit by double attacks that killed 51 people.

In the first attack, a suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden car into a police station in the southern city of Aden, killing at least three policemen, according to Yemeni officials and witnesses.

In a separate attack on Thursday, the Houthi rebel group said it launched drone and missile attacks on a military parade of fresh graduates in Aden's al-Bureiqa district, where the UAE has largely trained government forces since the start of the conflict.

Yemen in Focus: UAE 'retreats from conflict' to protect its own borders

It is unclear whether the two attacks were coordinated.

Aden is the seat of Yemen's internationally recognised government, which has been at war with the rebel Houthis who control the capital, Sanaa, and most of the country's north.

Aden has been frequently targeted by al-Qaeda militants in suicide attacks that have killed hundreds of security forces and police officers.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE have faced criticism for their intervention in support of the Yemeni government against Houthi rebels in 2015. The conflict has led to the death of tens of thousands of people, according to relief agencies.

A senior UN official appealed on Monday for the international community "not to turn its back" on Yemen and to honour its pledges of aid for the impoverished and war-battered country.

Agencies contributed to this report.

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