Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) had on Tuesday kidnapped five criminal investigation officers in the occupied province of Shabwah, media sources said.
“Al-Qaeda gunmen kidnapped five criminal investigation officers in Khora district, south of the provincial capital Ataq,” the sources explained .
The officers were identified as Awad Saleh al-Ayashi, Issam Abed Rabbo Hussein al-Awadhi, Fahmy Mohammed Maqhawi, Salem Ali Ahmed al-Ayashi and Aref Ghanem. They were abducted while on their way to the Bayhan district south of Shabwah.
Meanwhile, local mercenaries loyal to the UAE-backed Southern Transitional Council (STC) militia accused the local authorities in the province of “handing over these officers to al-Qaeda elements.”
“The local authority in Shabwah has dragged off five criminal search officers, including Brigadier General Awad al-Ayashi, and handed them over to al-Qaeda, who transferred them to Bayda province,” mercenary officer Ahmed al-Hurr said in a tweet.
The UAE-backed mercenaries in the region have often accused Saudi-backed forces of being in league with al-Qaeda.