Yemeni security officials say the head of police in the Tawahi district of the southern city of Aden was killed along with two of his guards in an attack by suspected Islamic militants.

They said the gunmen ambushed the police vehicle carrying the three on Saturday. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief reporters.

Yemen has been gripped by war since 2014, when Shiite Houthi rebels captured the capital, Sanaa, and large swaths of the country. The internationally recognized government and allied militias, which control Aden, have been advancing since last March, when a Saudi-led coalition joined the fight against the Houthis.

Local affiliates of the Islamic State group and al-Qaida have exploited the chaos to expand their reach.