13 die in south Yemen clash; 8 killed in friendly fire

July 30, 2011 10:57

ADEN - Five Yemeni troops and a colonel and seven militants died overnight in clashes in southern Yemen, and army artillery killed eight pro-government tribesmen by mistake, local and tribal officials said on Saturday.

The clashes took place outside Zinjibar, the center of the province of Abyan where militants have seized several areas, a local official told Reuters. The region lies east of an international shipping lane where 3 million barrels of oil pass daily.

A tribal official said the army targeted the tribesmen which it mistook for militants as they approached Zinjibar in another area late on Friday.

The militants have posed a rising challenge in recent months to army control in southern Yemen.

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