AQAP claims attacks in eastern and central Yemen

Yesterday, a Twitter account linked to al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) claimed credit for a series of attacks that took place in several Yemeni provinces between Nov. 11 and Nov. 17. The Twitter account also apologized for the five days of media silence that preceded the release of yesterday’s statements, claiming that the “temporary shutdown” was due to ongoing “battle conditions.”

First, AQAP claimed credit for three improvised explosive device (IED) attacks in Hadramout province aimed at Yemeni military personnel. The first of these attacks took place on Nov. 11, targeting a Yemeni armored vehicle as it traveled along the road linking Wadi Sirr and Shibam city in Wadi Hadramout. Although the terror group admitted it could not determine the number of casualties and wounded resulting from the attack, it did note that the Yemeni army had confirmed that two soldiers were killed and five others were injured.

According to AQAP, the second attack in Hadramout also took place on Nov. 11, along the main road linking the city of Mukallah with the Khalaf region on the coast. AQAP claimed that a Yemeni Special Forces officer named Ra’ed Ghaleb Awwad was killed and three other soldiers were wounded in the IED attack. Additionally, the AQAP statement alleged that the Yemeni military personnel targeted were driving a civilian vehicle and that the soldiers wounded in the attack were members of Yemen’s military police.

The third attack in Hadramout took place on Nov. 16, along the road connecting the cities of Seyoun and al Qatn. The AQAP statement said two Yemeni tanks and one armored vehicle were targeted in the attack, but that only the last tank was hit. AQAP again indicated that “it was not possible to accurately determine the enemy losses resulting from the detonation of the IED.”

Fighting also continued in Yemen’s central Baydah province, the site of intense clashes between AQAP and the Shiite Houthi rebels for the past month. AQAP claimed that fighting broke out at 11:00 a.m. on Nov. 12 between Sunni tribesmen and AQAP fighters on one side and the Houthi rebels on the other. The statement indicated that the battles erupted in the al-Alib section of Manasseh in Radaa and that AQAP fighters set fire to a Houthi military vehicle. AQAP also claimed credit for an IED attack that took place on Nov. 16 targeting a Houthi military vehicle in the al-Hamma region of Baydah. No casualties were reported by AQAP.

AQAP also carried out an IED operation in the Dayqa valley in Abyan’s Mahfad region, a longstanding stronghold of the terrorist group, on the morning of Nov. 16. AQAP claimed that the attack took place at precisely 9:30 a.m. and killed two Yemeni soldiers.

And finally, AQAP claimed to have assassinated a Houthi leader on Nov. 17 in the central Yemeni province of Dhamar, which had been seized by Houthi rebels with virtually no opposition in mid-October. According to the terror group’s statement, AQAP fighters opened fire at 11:00 a.m. as Houthi leader Khaled al-Washli was near the Anas public market in Dhamar. Notably, the AQAP statement asserted that the attack was carried out by Ansar al Sharia’s al-Farouq Brigade. In 2012, the US Department of State identified Ansar al Sharia as an alias for AQAP.

The following photos and accompanying captions were released by the same Twitter account along with the AQAP statements:

“Ansar al Sharia mujahideen review attack plan against the Houthis – Radaa”


“Weapons looted by mujahideen of Ansar al Sharia from the Houthis – Radaa.”

[Note: The stickers on the rifles and magazines show images of Houthi leader Abdul Malik al Houthi as well as the Houthi logo “Allahu Akbar, Death to America, Death to Israel, Curse Upon the Jews, Victory to Islam.”]


“Targeting Houthi locations with B-10 artillery [B-10 recoilless rifle] – Radaa”


“Targeting Houthi locations with B-10 artillery [B-10 recoilless rifle] – Radaa”


“Houthi casualties in the Radaa battles”


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