Sanaa, Feb 14: Yemen’s interior ministry said it foiled an attempt by terrorists to break into the central prison here Thursday night, which left seven people dead and two wounded.
A group of terrorists blew up a car bomb and fired at the guards at the prison where some Al Qaeda militants were jailed, the ministry said in a statement carried by the official Saba news agency, Xinhua reported.
The guards repelled the attack and forced the attackers to flee, it said, adding that “the brief clashes left seven people dead and two others wounded”.
“Taking advantage of chaos, some prisoners managed to escape,” it said. The ministry has launched an investigation into the attack and sent soldiers to search for the escaped prisoners, most of them Al Qaeda members, according to media.
No one has immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. However, the Arab country has been battling the Al Qaeda group which killed hundreds of government officials and military officers, and frequently attacked state and military institutions in the past two years.
Security personnel have blocked roads leading to the prison in northern Sanaa.
Security situation in Yemen worsened after political upheaval broke out in 2011 that severely weakened government control. Tribal fighters and Al Qaeda group frequently attacked government interests, foreign missions and kidnapped foreigners.
Three Westerners have been kidnapped in less than two weeks in Sanaa.