Nine soldiers killed in Yemen

Sanaa/Aden (Yemen), June 2 (IANS) A suicide car bomb went off at a military checkpoint near Yemen's Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) plant in Balhaf port in the southeastern province of Shabwa Sunday, killing at least nine soldiers, officials said.

A security official at the LNG plant in Balhaf told Xinhua by phone that the suicide bomber exploded his car at the gate of the LNG facility, killing nine soldiers.

The attack took place on a coastal road leading to the LNG plant, the official said on condition of anonymity, adding that "the car bombing was followed by a short period of shooting by attackers of the al-Qaida militants on another vehicle".

He said that al-Qaida attackers on another car, who opened fire at the soldiers after the car bomb went off, managed to flee.

"The explosion rocked the whole Balhaf port. However, there was no damage at the LNG plant except the gate and security facilities of the plant," he added.

An official at the interior ministry in capital Sanaa also told Xinhua earlier that the suicide car bombing left at least "five soldiers dead and several others injured".

Both officials declined to provide further details, and officials of the LNG headquarters in Sanaa refused to comment.

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