Car bomb rocks Yemen's defense ministry

7:00 AM, Dec 5, 2013   |    comments
Smoke raises after an explosion at the Defense Ministry complex in Sanaa, Yemen, on Dec. 5, 2013. (Photo: Mohammed Hamoud, AP)
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ADEN, Yemen (AP) - Military and hospital officials say a suicide bomber had detonated his explosives-laden car at Yemen's Defense Ministry, killing 15 soldiers and wounding at least 40.

They said as many as 12 gunmen also have been killed in a firefight between troops and a carload of attackers who arrived minutes after the Thursday morning blast, apparently in a bid to take over the complex in downtown Sanaa, Yemen's capital.

They said the gunmen were armed with assault rifles, hand grenades and rocket-propelled grenades.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which bore the hallmarks of al-Qaida, whose chapter in Yemen is considered among the world's most active.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to journalists.

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