139 dead in Yemen fighting, 55 troops held captive

  • Mon Mar 5th 2012

Military officials say the death toll in fighting between army troops and al-Qaida militants in south Yemen has risen to 139.

The officials said Sunday's fighting in Abyan province killed 107 soldiers and 32 militants. Scores were wounded on both sides. The latest death toll was confirmed by medical officials in the area.

The military officials said the militants' surprise attack on army bases outside Abyan's provincial capital Zinjibar also led to the capture of 55 soldiers. The captives were paraded on the streets of Jaar, a nearby town that like Zinjibar has been under al-Qaida's control for about a year.

The officials spoke on Monday on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to reporters.

AP

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