Damascus, Jan 17 (ANI): Al Qaeda militants have seized full control of a town 100 miles south of Yemeni capital Sanaa, storming the local prison and freeing its inmates.
According to security officials, the militants led by the brother-in-law of the late US-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, freed as many as 150 inmates from the local prison in Rada'a city, including al Qaeda associates, and allegedly raised the Al-Qaeda flag over a government building.
The Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) now controls seven population centers in Southern Yemen, ABC News reports.
It also controls four other towns in Abyan province as well as a town in Shabwa province.
The militant group's territorial gains come as the central government battles widespread unrest in the country.
AQAP uses the name Ansar al-Sharia, or the Army of Islamic Law, in its battle against government forces.
Fighters have allegedly sworn allegiance to Ayman al-Zawahiri, the Egyptian co-founder of al Qaeda who took command of the terror group after Osama bin Laden was killed in a US raid in Pakistan last May. (ANI)
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