Brother of top Al Qaeda leader injured, death toll raised to 40 in mistaken airstrikes and clashes
By Nasser Arrabyee/30/07/2011
The brother of the top leader of Al Qaeda in Yemen, Khaled Al Wahayshi was injured in the ongoing battles between the government troops and Al Qaeda fighters in the southern province of Abyan, said medical sources on Saturday.
Khaled Al Wahayshi was admitted to the hospital of Ja’ar after he was injured on Thursday July 28th, in the area of Dofas, close to the coastal city of Zinjubar, medical sources from the hospital said.
Al Wahayshi was admitted to Ja’ar hospital along with a relative of the leading member of Al Qaeda Abdul Latif Al Said, the source said.
The state-run Saba news agency said Saturday that four Al Qaeda operatives were arrested in a check point close to Zinjubar.
One of the four was identified as Abdulla Saeed Omar Hubaibat and described as one of the most dangerous elements.
“Hubaibat was behind attacks on several check points,” the agency quoted an unidentified security official as saying.
The top leader of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsular, Nasser Al Wahyashi, left Zinjubar, the capital of the volatile province of Abyan, on Thursday July 21st, 2011 after battles intensified, according to reliable tribal sources.
The reliable sources from Abyan and Shabwah, said that Nasser Al Wahayshi is now leading the battles from the town of Azzan in Shabwah.
The same sources also said that the Yemeni-American terrorist Anwar Al Awlaki was seen last week in the same city of Azzan, the new stronghold of Al Qaeda leadership.
Meanwhile, the death toll raised to 40 tribesmen in mistaken airstrikes and clashes with Al Qaeda operatives before the dawn of Saturday, nearby Zinjubar, said tribal sources. The sources mentioned 29 of those dead by names and tribes.
The mistaken airstrikes happened after at least 15 tribesmen were killed by Al Qaeda operatives in a tribal check point close to Zinjubar in the southern province of Abyan.
Al Qaeda operatives attacked the check point in Shukrah, 48 km east of Zinjubar, at Friday night after the tribesmen killed an Al Qaeda fighter and arrested another in the same check point, the sources said.
The cars and weapons of the tribesmen ,mostly from Al Marakish tribe, were taken by the Al Qaeda operatives.
Al Qaeda implemented the attack in retaliation for the killing one of them on Friday, said the sources.
Earlier on Friday, one of Al Qaeda operative from Mareb called Saleh Ali Faras was killed while his friend Al Mekdad Saleh Tuaiman from Mareb also was arrested when both of them clashed with the tribesmen in the check point of Shaykh Salem between Zinjubar and Shukrah along the coast of the Gulf of Aden, said the tribal sources.
About two hours later after Al Qaeda operatives returned to Zinjubar with the cars and weapons taken from the defeated tribesmen, the airplanes came and hit mistakenly the rest of the tribesmen in Wadi Hassan and Shaykh Salem areas in the middle between the coastal cities of Zinjubar and Shukrah.
The tribal and military blockade on Zinjubar, which was held by Al Qaeda late last May, started last week. But Al Qaeda is still controlling about half of the city.
A military source said that guerilla war of Al Qaeda and their style of using the suicide bombings against the forces delayed army and tribesmen from totally controlling the city.
“We need some time to take some technical steps to avoid Al Qaeda suicide operations and also to weaken their abilities by blockading,” the military official said on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to talk to press.