October 16, 2012 - 19:21 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Two masked men on a motorcycle shot dead an Iraqi military adviser to Yemen's army on Tuesday, October 16 security and medical sources said, extending a series of killings bearing the hallmarks of al Qaeda, according to Reuters.
The United States is worried that al Qaeda, entrenched in parts of Yemen will use a power vacuum to launch attacks abroad, and has stepped up drone strikes on suspected militants with the backing of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.
Iraqi Brigadier General Khaled al-Hashemi, who works as a consultant at the Ministry of Defence, was gunned down near the foreign intelligence service building in the Yemeni capital Sanaa, a security source said.
"This operation is almost identical to the assassination of the security officer at the U.S. Embassy and has the fingerprints of al Qaeda (on it)," said the source, who asked not to be named.
Last week, Qassem Aqlan, a Yemeni man who worked in the security office of the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, was killed by gunmen in a drive-by shooting.
Hashemi was part of a team tasked with restructuring the Yemeni army after the popular uprising that ousted longtime strongman president Ali Abdullah Saleh in February.
He was one of several Iraqi military experts hired by the Sanaa government after the toppling of Saddam Hussein in 2003, a government source said.
Tuesday's attack was the latest in a series targeting security officials and politicians in the impoverished and often chaotic Arabian Peninsula state, which is battling Islamist militants with U.S. assistance.