The Yemeni air force launched strikes Sunday on hideouts of al-Qaida militants in the southern province of Abyan, hours after an al-Qaida car bomber hit a security checkpoint in Aden and killed 14 soldiers, a local security officer said.
"The Yemeni warplanes launched several strikes on al-Qaida hideouts at the militants-held cities of Zinjibar and Jaar earlier Sunday," the officer told Xinhua by phone on condition of anonymity.
No reports on casualties is available now, he said.
"The air raids came hours after a suicide bomber rammed his bobby-trapped car into two military pick-up vehicles which had about 20 soldiers onboard around the security checkpoint of Al- Alam," the officer said, adding that "the death toll from the car bomb attack rose to 14."
The Aden-born 21-year-old suicide bomber, who was also killed in the explosion, was among the list of the Interior Ministry's most wanted terrorists, an official of the ministry told Xinhua.
The security checkpoint in the Al-Alam area is manning the main highway linking Aden to Zinjibar, Abyan's provincial capital city, which was taken over by al-Qaida militants in late May.
About six military brigades backed by a battalion of the U.S. Marine Corps stationed on the outskirts of Zinjibar, tightening a siege on the terrorist group in preparation for all-around offensive, according to Yemeni security officials.