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The Mideast

Militants shoot down helicopter in Yemen, 8 killed

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Police in an armored vehicle secure a road leading to the U.S. embassy in Sanaa, Yemen, Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2013. The State Department on Tuesday ordered non-essential personnel at the U.S. Embassy in Yemen to leave the country. The department said in a travel warning that it had ordered the departure of non-emergency U.S. government personnel from Yemen "due to the continued potential for terrorist attacks" and said U.S. citizens in Yemen should leave immediately because of an "extremely high" security threat level. (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed)

Yemeni officials say that militants have shot down an army helicopter, killing all eight people on board including a military commander.

The officials say the helicopter was downed by a missile over the Al Qaeda stronghold of Wadi Ubida in central Yemen. The helicopter was flying from the capital Sanaa to the province of Marib, officials said. The passengers were part of a military force guarding oil installations in the province.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the press.

The attack comes at a time the U.S. and British embassies evacuated staff amid reports of a threatened attack by the terrorist group.