Al-Qaeda suspects kill 'gay' man in Yemen: Security sources

AFP , Thursday 29 Aug 2013

Apparent targeted killing follows the death of four men in similar attacks in Huta this year

Suspected Al-Qaeda gunmen on Thursday shot dead a Yemeni man because they believed he was a homosexual, a security official told AFP.

"Armed Al-Qaeda suspects on a motorbike opened fire on 29-year-old Salem Ahmed Hasan in a market in Huta," capital of the southern province of Lahj, the official said, adding the man died instantly.

He said the man was targeted because the attackers thought he was a homosexual.

Another four men were killed in similar attacks in Huta this year. It is understood that attackers also believed the men to be gay.

The last attack was in July when suspected Al-Qaeda gunmen shot and wounded a man only days after they killed another in similar circumstances.

Al-Qaeda in Yemen is active mainly in the southern and eastern parts of the country.

Yemen's army, backed by US drone attacks, has managed to retake control of the country's south, of which large swathes had been seized by Al-Qaeda militants.

Although weakened, the terror network still carries out hit-and-run attacks against army and police targets.

During their control of areas in southern Yemen, Islamist militants imposed a strict version of Islamic Sharia law on residents, executing or lashing those they accused of various crimes. Those accused of theft had their hands severed.

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