Yemeni officials say suspected al-Qaida militants attacked an army command in the south, killing at least three soldiers and a civilian.

Military officials say Wednesday's attack in the port city of Aden started when the attackers detonated an explosives-laden car at the complex's gate and fired on the troops.

Hospital officials say two of the attackers also died in the subsequent shootout.

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

The Aden attack appeared to mirror an attack that targeted the defense ministry's headquarters in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa last December in which more than 50 people were killed.

Al-Qaida in Yemen, which is considered the most active branch of the terror network, claimed responsibility for the Sanaa attack.