ADEN - Yemeni warplanes killed at least six militants linked to al-Qaida on Wednesday, the government said as it pressed ahead with an offensive against insurgents in the south.

Yemen has been struggling to control Islamist fighters in the territory who have taken advantage of the chaos surrounding more than a year of mass protests and fighting that unseated former president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

The country's defense ministry said it launched an airstrike on a group of militants near the southern city of Lawdar, killing six of them.

Lawdar residents told Reuters one person was also killed and another two injured after mortar rounds hit their houses. There was no independent confirmation of who launched the attacks.

Please LIKE our Facebook page - it makes us stronger