Security official for U.S. Embassy in Yemen killed
October 12, 2012 -- Updated 0327 GMT (1127 HKT)
A police car is parked at the scene where unidentified gunmen shot dead a senior Yemeni security official.
- NEW: The security official was not involved in the embassy attack probe, the U.S. says
- Qassim Aqlan was a foreign service national investigator for the embassy
- The Yemeni national was killed on a major road in the capital
- Protesters stormed the embassy in September
Read a version of this story in Arabic.
Sanaa, Yemen (CNN) -- A security official with the U.S. Embassy in Yemen was shot dead on his way to work Thursday, Yemeni officials said.
The killing of Qassim Aqlan, a Yemeni national, bears the hallmarks of al Qaeda, the officials said.
Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula has been blamed for numerous attacks in Yemen.
Gunmen on a motorcycle shot at the vehicle Aqlan was in. He died at the scene, Interior Ministry officials said.
Turkey hits back; Drone strike in Yemen
Fury over video spreads across region
How was U.S. embassy breached?
"Motorcycle attacks are currently al Qaeda's main tactic," a senior Interior Ministry official said, adding that such attacks "are easier for terrorists to coordinate and plan for."
The shooting took place along Siteen, a main street in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa, which is generally considered one of the safest, officials said. The Yemeni president's house is on the same road.
"We are deeply saddened by the killing," said U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland.
"We condemn this vicious act in the strongest terms possible and extend our deepest condolences to his family and friends at this difficult time."
Aklan was a foreign service national investigator for the embassy for the past 11 years, Nuland said in a statement. "He was a dedicated professional who will be greatly missed. We are coordinating closely with the Yemeni authorities to investigate this attack and to help bring those responsible to justice."
While some Interior Ministry officials at first said Aqlan was overseeing the investigation into an attack last month on the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, others later told CNN he was not.
The U.S. State Department said he was not involved in the investigation.
Interior Minister Abdulkader Qahtan is overseeing that investigation, said a Yemeni government official not authorized to speak to the media.
Aqlan's death "sends a message that if you're working with the Americans you'll be targeted no matter who you are," the official said.
Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in front of the embassy in September to protest the video "Innocence of Muslims," which maligns the Prophet Mohammed. The demonstration turned violent, and some protesters broke into the embassy.
Clashes between security forces and demonstrators left at least four protesters dead and more than 30 people injured.
CNN's Jill Dougherty, Elise Labott, and Josh Levs contributed to this report.
Part of complete coverage on
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1526 GMT (2326 HKT)
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0009 GMT (0809 HKT)
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1801 GMT (0201 HKT)
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1548 GMT (2348 HKT)
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0507 GMT (1307 HKT)
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1215 GMT (2015 HKT)
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0006 GMT (0806 HKT)
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1237 GMT (2037 HKT)
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
February 8, 2013 -- Updated 0718 GMT (1518 HKT)
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.
Today's five most popular stories