Yemeni al-Qaida commander surrenders to security authority

13:48, August 20, 2010      

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A wanted al-Qaida commander accused of taking part in bombing a French oil tanker in 2002 surrendered to the Yemeni security services, the country's Defense Ministry said on Thursday.

"Hizam Mujally, a local al-Qaida leader in Arhab district, some 30 km north of the capital Sanaa, gave himself up to the security authorities," the ministry said.

Yemeni authorities accused Mujally of participating in plotting the bomb attack targeting a French oil tanker off southern Yemeni coasts in 2002. He was also charged with killing a military officer in August, 2004.

Police sources said Mujally had been arrested and subjected to an investigation by the Yemeni intelligence in 2003 , but he escaped from a highly-guarded intelligence prison in 2006 among 23 al-Qaida detainees.

Last week, another al-Qaida leader, Jumaan Sufian, gave himself up to the security apparatus in al-Jouf province, northeast of Sanaa, according to the Defense Ministry.

The Yemen-based al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has carried out a series of deadly attacks on the country's security facilities and western targets in southern Yemen over the past two months, leaving dozens of people dead.

Yemen, the ancestral homeland of al-Qaida network leader Osama bin Laden, has intensified security operations and air raids against terrorist groups, after the Yemen-based al-Qaida wing claimed responsibility for a failed Christmas Day attempt to blow up a U.S. passenger plane bound for Detroit last year.

Source: Xinhua


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