Yemeni security forces freed seven Yemeni hostages and a foreigner in a raid in which seven al-Qaeda kidnappers were also killed, the country’s supreme security committee said.

The committee did not disclose the nationality of the foreign hostage.

A Yemeni government source had earlier said the foreigner was a US military instructor who worked at al-Anad air base in Lahej province, 60 kilometres north of the port city of Aden.

But in Washington, a US defence official said “there were no US personnel rescued from Yemen last night”.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said US authorities applauded the Yemeni government for the hostage rescue operation. He referred requests for information to the Yemeni government.

The committee said in a statement that one member of the Yemeni security forces was lightly wounded in the operation.

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