Sanaa, Yemen -

A Yemen security official says an explosion in the province of Bayda has killed at least 13 suspected al-Qaeda militants.

The official in Bayda's capital city of Radda says the explosion went off in a house owned by a known al-Qaeda operative, Ahmed Abdullah Deif-Allah Al-Zahab. It appeared to be an accident.

Residents were barred on Sunday from approaching the scene of the incident by militants with links to al-Qaeda, the official said.

Early in 2012 al-Qaeda's Yemen-based branch briefly seized the town of Radda, an outpost 160 kilometres south of the capital.

The group is active in southern Yemen and has launched deadly attacks against the military since it lost control of key southern cities it overran in 2011. - Sapa-AP