US air strikes hit Al Qaeda training camp in Yemen, kill dozens

US military carries out air strikes against Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) training camp in Yemen, killing dozens

Photo by: AFP (Archive)
Photo by: AFP (Archive)

An EA-18G launches from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson on March 19, 2015.

Updated Mar 23, 2016

The US military launched air strikes on Tuesday against a training camp run by Al Qaeda's branch in Yemen, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), killing dozens of militants, the Pentagon said.

"This strike deals a blow to AQAP's ability to use Yemen as a base for attacks that threaten US persons, and it demonstrates our commitment to defeating Al Qaeda and denying it safe haven," Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said.

Yemen is a stronghold for Al Qaeda's most active branch, which was founded in 2009.

In the same day, Saudi-led air strikes also targeted Al Qaeda in eastern Yemen. During the attacks, dozens of militants were killed and wounded, a provincial governor and medics said.

The strikes hit an area west of Mukalla, a port city and capital of the Hadramout province. Residents said at least 30 members of Al Qaeda were killed in the strikes and many more wounded.

A Saudi-led coalition began a military campaign in Yemen a year ago with the aim of preventing Iran-allied Houthi rebels and forces loyal to Yemen's ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh from taking control of the country.

Yemen peace talks expected in Kuwait next month

Meanwhile, a senior official in the Yemeni government stated that peace talks aimed at ending Yemen's war will convene in Kuwait next month.

"The talks will be on April 17 in Kuwait, accompanied by a temporary ceasefire," the official said declining to be named. There were two inconclusive rounds of peace talks in Switzerland last year.

There was no immediate response from the Houthi militia regarding the prospect of talks. A prisoner swap and pause in combat on the border with Saudi Arabia earlier this month had raised hopes of a push to end the war.

According to Yemen Ministry of Public Health, at least 7,000 people, including 1600 children, have been killed in the ongoing civil war in Yemen, nearly half of them civilians and more than 16,500 have been injured since March 2015.

TRTWorld, Reuters