Groups affiliated with Al Qaeda in Arabia Peninsula (AQAP) have killed more than 50 people in Yemen over the past week, as suicide bombers targeted senior army officers, soldiers, and tribal leaders loyal to the central government in the capital Sana'a.
With these recent attacks, AQAP can probably claim the mantle of the mostly deadly Middle Eastern branch of Al Qaeda at the moment. It thrives on Yemen's instability and weak central government, and has recently switched from targeted terrorist attacks to a full-scale insurgency on the model of the Afghan Taliban.
AQAP's reach doesn't stop at Yemen's borders, either. The group has been implicated in attempts to blow up US-bound airliners, most recently in May 2012.
And while AQAP doesn't have the firepower or popular support to overthrow the government, the Yemeni army seems to be in for a long fight in the militant strongholds in Yemen's tribal, impoverished south-east.
Photo by Al Malahem Media Foundation.