SAN'A, Yemen -- Suspected al-Qaida suicide bombers disguised in military uniforms stormed into an army base in southern Yemen yesterday, killing 14 soldiers and wounding more than 20, Yemeni officials said.

The dawn assault on the coastal base in Abyan province involved four suicide bombers in an army pickup truck laden with explosives, and a gunbattle with soldiers who were caught sleeping.

The attack highlights the increasingly brazen tactics used by militants in this impoverished Arab Peninsula country and the challenges Yemen's new leadership faces as it struggles, with U.S. help, to rout militants and make the nation secure.

Washington considers al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, the Yemeni branch of the network, to be the group's most dangerous offshoot, and holds it responsible for several failed attacks on U.S. territory. -- AP

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