ADEN, Yemen, July 14 (Xinhua) -- A commander of pro-government police forces in Yemen's southern province of Taiz was killed Friday in an exchange of fire with unknown attackers, a security official told Xinhua.
The unknown attackers opened fire and killed Brigadier Mohamed Abdullah, the commander of police force in Misrakh district of Taiz province, the security source said on condition of anonymity.
Four of his bodyguards were killed after they engaged in an exchange of gunfire with the attackers, the security source said.
No one claimed responsibility for the attack, but police sources in Taiz said they suspected terrorist militants had carried out the attack.
"Suspected terrorist elements set up an ambushed and assassinated him because of the responsibility he had, it's clear," a police officer said.
The assailants had fled the scene to unknown locations, and that a manhunt was underway, the police officer added.
Meanwhile, fresh street gun fights broke out between rival pro-government militias in Taiz province on Friday, causing unknown casualties, according to residents.
Taiz province has for long been under total blockade and witnessed indiscriminate shelling by the Shiite Houthis who control most parts of Taiz province.
Yemen has been suffering from a civil war and a Saudi-led military intervention for around two years.
The civil war began after the Houthi militants with support from forces loyal to the former president ousted the UN-backed transitional government and occupied capital Sanaa militarily in September 2014.
The legitimate government controls the south and some eastern parts, while the Houthi /Saleh alliance controls the other parts including the capital Sanaa.
The UN has sponsored peace talks between the warring factions several times, but the factions failed to reach common ground.
The civil war, ground battles and airstrikes have already killed more than 10,000 people, half of them civilians, injured more than 35,000 others and displaced over two millions, according to humanitarian agencies. Enditem