12 Sep 2012

Attempt to kill defence minister in Yemen

9:00 am on 12 September 2012

Yemen's defence minister has survived an assassination attempt which killed at least 11 people, including seven of his bodyguards.

The BBC reports a car bomb was detonated when Major General Muhammad Nasir Ahmad drove past government offices in central Sanaa in a motorcade.

Officials said it was the fourth assassination attempt against the minister since last December.

Said al-Shihri, the second-in-command of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula was reportedly killed on Monday with six others in the Hadramawt area of southern Yemen.

Al-Shihri was released from Guantanamo Bay in 2007 and sent to Saudi Arabia for rehabilitation. he was said to have escaped a US drone attack on 20 September last year.

AQAP was formed in January 2009 by a merger between two regional offshoots of al-Qaeda in Yemen and Saudi Arabia.