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A total of 10 soldiers were killed and five others injured in the battle which is still ongoing in al-Koud town, located on a strategic coastline overlooking the Gulf of Aden and to the east of Abyan's capital city of Zinjibar, the official told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.
The 201st Armed Brigade and the 25th Machined Brigade inflicted heavy losses on the militants in the ongoing fight, said the official without giving a specific death toll of the terrorist group.
Abyan, some 480 km south of the Yemeni capital of Sanaa, has been the scene of daily fierce fighting since militants of Al- Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) captured Zinjibar and at least three other towns in May 2011.
Indications on the ground show that the government troops have been advancing against the al-Qaida off-shoot in Abyan, according to several local officials.
The government has recently intensified its operations against AQAP in a bid to eradicate the militants and regain control of the country's southern territories. The fighting is still underway only few days ahead of the early presidential elections slated for Feb. 21, which will end the rule of outgoing President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who is currently in the United States for medical treatment.