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Two intelligence officers injured in shooting in southeast Yemen


08:49, January 30, 2013

ADEN, Yemen, Jan. 29 (Xinhua) -- Two intelligence officers were injured by gunshot near a police station in Yemen's southeastern province of Hadramout on Tuesday, a government official told Xinhua.

The two intelligence inspectors were on their way home when a group of masked gunmen opened fire on their car near a police center in Hadramout province, leaving them seriously injured, the local government official said on condition of anonymity.

"One intelligence officer had a gunshot wound in the abdomen and was undergoing surgery. The other officer suffered minor injuries," the government source said.

Yemeni Defense Ministry confirmed the incident in a brief text message obtained by Xinhua saying that "two intelligence officers were injured by terrorists riding motorbikes in Hadramout."

The attackers who managed to escape have not yet been identified but such attacks, which are becoming increasingly frequent recently, are usually carried out by al-Qaida militants.

In January 2009, al-Qaida affiliates in Saudi Arabia and Yemen officially merged and formed the Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

The group, mainly entrenching itself in Yemen's southern provinces of Abyan and Shabwa, is on the terrorist list of the United States, which considers it as an increasing threat to its national security.

The AQAP underscores the challenges faced by Yemen's new president, Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who won support from major Yemeni political forces as well as the United States and Saudi Arabia.

Hadi is tasked with restoring security and stability to Yemen and putting an end to the growing influence of al-Qaida that threatens oil shipping routes in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden.

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