Yemen Police Officer's Body Found Mutilated

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Yemeni police have found the mutilated body of an officer kidnapped last month in the eastern province of Hadramawt, a security official said on Thursday, pointing to al-Qaida militants as suspects.

"The security forces found the body of Lieutenant Colonel Al-Numeiri Abdo al-Oudi," who was the deputy police chief in Al-Qotn village, the official said.

Oudi's body had "received several shots in the chest while his ears were cut off and his eyes gouged out".

The official said al-Qaida militants, who are active in southern and eastern Yemen, could have been behind the killing as "no other party can be barbaric to such a degree".

Unidentified gunmen kidnapped the police commander on November 29 as he made his way to the mosque in Al-Qotn for dawn prayers, said the same source.

Deadly attacks against officers of the security forces are common in Yemen, a country engaged in a difficult political transition after year-long protests forced veteran president Ali Abdullah Saleh to quit in November 2011.

The uprising weakened the central government and al-Qaida took advantage by reinforcing its presence in the lawless south, although government forces have since seized back a string of cities and towns.

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