BY JIM KOURI
A large-scale explosion in Yemen’s Bayda province is believed to have killed at least 15 suspected al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) members on Sunday, according to a former U.S. law enforcement commander now serving as an official in Israel.
The official says an IED (improvised explosive device) detonated in a dwelling owned by a suspected al-Qaeda cell leader, Ahmed Deif-Allah Al-Zahab. The deadly explosion is believed to have been an accident that occurred as the terrorists were preparing the device for an attack.
When Yemeni civilians attempted to help the occupants of the devastated building, they were barred from approaching the scene of the incident by armed gunman linked to AQAP, the official said.
AQAP continues to be a threat in Yemen and the terrorist group has launched deadly attacks against the military since was pushed out of cities and towns it controlled in late 2011.
The Somali group known as al-Shabaab has provided weapons, fighters and training with explosives over the last few months to the Yemen-based al-Qaeda branch that has been battling with the Yemeni police and army forces in Abyan since May 2011, according to officials such as Congressman Pete King (R-NY).
The country’s interior ministry reported earlier this month that al-Shabaab had sent 300 armed men to fight alongside the Yemen-based al-Qaeda wing known locally as Partisans of Sharia ( Islamic law) in Abyan province. The group is also known as al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).
In January 2009, al-Qaeda affiliates in Saudi Arabia and Yemen officially merged and formed Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, as reported in the Examiner.
The Moral Liberal Contributing Editor, Jim Kouri, CPP, is the fifth Vice President and Public Information Officer of the National Association of Chiefs of Police, has served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Contact Jim.