U.S. officers kill two suspected kidnappers in Yemen

By Kyle Johnson,

Two U.S. officers shot and killed two armed Yemeni civilians suspected of attempting to kidnap them in April.

The two U.S. embassy officers, a Special Operations commando and CIA officer, were in a barbershop when the two men tried to make their move. After the shooting, and with the Yemeni government's OK, the United States moved quickly and pulled the officers out of the country.

In an attempt to move ahead of any suggestion the two men were engaged in a military operation at the time of the shooting, State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told The New York Times in an email, "We can confirm that, last month, two U.S. Embassy officers in Yemen fired their weapons after being confronted by armed individuals in an attempted kidnapping at a small commercial business in Sana."

The Yemeni media reported at the time that the two men were killed by unknown shooters and Yemeni Embassy spokesman Mohammed Albasha acknowledged being aware of the situation, but declined to comment any further.

Information on the April shooting was released on Friday as 11 militants were gunned down by security forces, reports CNN. Two Yemeni Defense Ministry officials said that the men were al-Qaeda terrorists.

In the country's capital city of Sanaa, three more militants were killed in a gunfight, which also claimed the lives of four security troops. The Yemeni government has moved to strongly oppose the al-Qaeda presence in the country and already over 80 suspected militants have been killed, a Yemeni government official confirmed.

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