Two al-Qaida militants believed to be behind threats to the US in clashes in Yemen have been killed by government forces, said a security official.
The official said that one militant was injured and fighting was still on.
“These elements are believed to be behind the threats directed to the US embassy,” he said.
The US and British embassies were closed on Monday for second consecutive day over concerns about possible militant attacks after the failed bombing of a US bound airliner on Christmas Day.
The Yemen branch of al-Qaida has claimed responsibility for the attempt to blow up the airliner through Nigerian suspect Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab.
Yemen, which is confronted with a Shi’ite Muslim rebellion in the north and separatist protests in the south, said that it would not tolerate militant groups on its territory.
Of late, Western allies have sought to strengthen Yemen’s government fearing that al-Qaida might exploit country’s political instability for executing more attacks across the world.
Foreign Minister Abubakr al-Qirbi said in December that there could be up to 300 al-Qaeda militants in Yemen, some of whom may be planning attacks on Western targets.