Sana’a: A Yemeni air raid against a "terrorist cell" in the southeast of the country has killed two senior al Qaeda members, the Defence Ministry said early Monday.
"Our air force carried out a raid on terrorist elements who were planning attacks on vital installations (and) two al Qaeda leaders were killed," said a statement on the Defence Ministry`s website.
It did not specify what installations were being targeted, but said that the air strike happened in Moudia region -- around 300 miles (480 kilometres) southeast of Sana’a
-- which is close to the oil-rich province of Shabwa.
Yemeni authorities have intensified their campaign against the country`s al Qaeda branch after it claimed a botched Christmas Day bid to blow up a US passenger plane over Detroit.
Earlier this month, a security official said 11 men were arrested in the capital Sana’a on suspicion of plotting attacks for al Qaeda.
Al Qaeda militants have previously targeted Western embassies in the city.
Security forces arrested three suspected members of al Qaeda on February 17 in Marib province, east of the capital and on January 16 the authorities announced the arrest of three other suspected Qaeda militants.