Yemen security: 5 militants killed in airstrike

July 12, 2011 - 10:29 AM

SANAA, Yemen (AP) — A Yemeni security official says a government airstrike has killed five militants in an area overrun by Islamist radicals.

The strike hit a checkpoint run by militants between the southern towns of Zinjibar and Jaar late Monday. Militants believed to be close to al-Qaida have seized control of both towns in recent months.

Security across Yemen has broken down amid a five-month uprising seeking to oust longtime President Ali Abdullah Saleh. The United States worries that al-Qaida could exploit chaos in Yemen to increase operations there.

The security official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.