ADEN, Yemen, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) -- A pair of missiles fired from a U.S. drone slammed into al-Qaida hideouts in Yemen's southern province of Abyan early Thursday, killing at least eight militants, a security official told Xinhua.
The unmanned U.S. aircraft fired missiles at two gatherings of al-Qaida militants on the northwestern outskirts of Jaar town, killing at least eight members of the terrorist group on the scene, the local security official said, requesting anonymity.
"American drone-fired missiles hit two targets of the al-Qaida militants in Jaar's suburbs. Initial reports say eight terrorists were killed. Several militants were wounded and died later," the security official said.
Some of the dead were believed to be foreign fighters, but the security sources did not know where they were from.
"The identities of the terrorists killed in the aerial attack were not immediately clear. Some of the dead were foreigners," the source said.
A military intelligence officer confirmed to Xinhua the air strike and casualties.
Local residents said huge blasts rocked the town's neighborhoods and military warplanes were flying in the area at the time of the attack.
Yemen's military launched a month-long army offensive earlier this year and forced al-Qaida militants to flee several of their bastions in the country's restive southern and eastern provinces which they captured during last year's political turmoil.
The resurgent Yemeni branch of al-Qaida, which has increased its attacks on both Western and government targets in the Arabian Peninsula state, vowed to carry out more suicide attacks to take revenge.
Fighting al-Qaida militants in the restive south is one of the several challenges confronting Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who has promised to launch a national dialogue to settle disputes among all political factions and to uproot the Yemeni branch of al-Qaida with the help of the United States and neighboring Saudi Arabia.