Spy paranoia hits Yemen Qaeda after leader’s killing
SANAA - Al-Qaeda in Yemen executed Wednesday two Saudi accused of spying for the United States, a day after the jihadist group confirmed the death of its leader in a US drone strike.
They were accused of planting tracking chips in vehicles and clothes used by Al-Qaeda leaders, allowing drones to target them, a local official in southeastern Mukalla said.
After their public execution by a firing squad in the Al-Qaeda-held city, their bodies were tied to poles, the official and witnesses said.
Yemen-based Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, considered by Washington as the most dangerous affiliate of the global jihadist network, was formed in 2009 following a merger of the Yemeni and Saudi branches.
AQAP confirmed in an online video dated June 15 the death of its leader Nasir al-Wuhayshi, who was number two in Al-Qaeda, along with two other militants in a US drone strike last week.
Two other senior Al-Qaeda leaders in Yemen -- ideologue Ibrahim al-Rubaish and Nasser al-Ansi, who appeared in a video claiming the January massacre on French magazine Charlie Hebdo -- were killed in similar US strikes in April.