SANAA, YEMEN – Yemeni raids on al-Qaida positions have left at least 28 fighters and three soldiers dead, as the government consolidates its hold on recaptured militant strongholds, military officials said Wednesday.
The clashes in Abyan and Shabwa provinces are part of a weeks-long offensive against al-Qaida, aiming at uprooting the militant group from large swaths of land the group seized during last years’ uprising and the political and security vacuum that followed.
Military officials said that at least six air raids targeted moving vehicles and al-Qaida positions in Mahfad, the last stronghold of al-Qaida in Abyan province. The Yemeni military regained control of several al-Qaida strongholds in Abyan earlier this month.
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