The announcement came 3 days after a suicide bomber killed 4 soldiers and a civilian and wounded 16 people in Aden.
Yemen’s state news agency Saba quoted a security source as saying 6 people “among some of the most dangerous elements” of Al-Qaeda were captured while trying to infiltrate into the province, which includes a port and oil refinery.
The report described the intended target of the thwarted attack as “vital and economic installations,” giving no further details.
Months of popular protests demanding President Ali Abdullah Saleh end his 33 years in power have brought near chaos to Yemen, which is home to Al-Qaeda’s potent regional wing and also faces a separatist revolt in its south and a tenuous peace with rebels in its north.
The Yemeni Army has been battling hundreds of militants affiliated to Al-Qaeda who seized control of the southern city of Zinjibar and smaller towns in the province of Abyan.
The security source said the arrested militants, all bomb experts, were carrying detonators and wireless communications equipment.
The state news agency gave no further details and the report could not be independently verified.
Saba said 5 Al-Qaeda militants have been killed and 7 Yemeni soldiers were injured in clashes in Abyan.
Source: Saba; Reuters