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Drone kills two Qaeda suspects in Yemen


Sanaa, Nov 6 (AFP) A suspected US drone strike killed two alleged Al-Qaeda militants in southern Yemen today, tribal sources said, the latest in a series of deadly raids against the jihadist network.

The charred bodies of the two men, who had been riding a motorbike, were found in the town of Mudia in the southern province of Abyan, the sources said.

Drone strikes against Al-Qaeda suspects in Yemen intensified this week with at least 20 militants killed in raids by unmanned aircraft in the central province of Baida on Monday.

Yesterday, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) announced the death of two of its top commanders, Shawki al-Baadani and Nabil al-Dahab, in those raids.

The United States in October announced USD 45 million in rewards on the heads of the leaders of AQAP, which it considers one of the network’s most dangerous subsidiaries.

The United States is the only country operating drones over Yemen, but US officials rarely confirm individual strikes. Al-Qaeda has exploited instability in the impoverished country since a 2011 uprising overthrew president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

The turmoil has raised fears that Yemen, which neighbours oil-flush Saudi Arabia and lies on the key shipping route from the Suez Canal to the Gulf, may become a failed state similar to Somalia.

In recent weeks AQAP militants have been locked in deadly battles with Shiite Huthi militias who have swept south from their strongholds in the north, overrunning the capital Sanaa and several other cities.

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