ADEN, Yemen, May 17 (Xinhua) -- Two leading members of the Yemen-based al-Qaida branch were killed when a U.S. drone pounded their vehicle in Yemen's southeastern province of Hadramout, a security official said Thursday.
The U.S. drone fired two missiles on a moving pick-up truck which was passing through a main road near Shibam area, in Hadramout's valley late Wednesday night, the local security official told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.
The two militants were on the Yemeni government's most wanted list for involvement in several terrorist attacks against domestic facilities, the official said.
A witness told Xinhua anonymously that "rockets landed on a small vehicle last night in Shibam area ... we later saw two burned bodies lying next to the damaged car."
The al-Qaida group has no comment on the attacks yet.
On May 6, a U.S. drone attack killed Fahd al-Quso, a prominent al-Qaida figure who was wanted for the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole in Yemen.
In recent months, U.S. drones have increased air raids in Yemen 's southern regions, after the White House announced that a plot by the Yemen-based al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula to blow up a U.S. airliner had been successful thwarted.
Hundreds of the al-Qaida group still hold several cities in southern Yemen, but they have pulled out of some strategic bastions after fighting with government troops in the southern Abyan province.