Yemeni officials say officers loyal to ousted President Ali Abdullah Saleh are leading a mutiny inside the headquarters of an elite paramilitary unit, seeking to oust their commander.

The officials say gunfire was heard Thursday afternoon inside the Special Forces headquarters, located in the heart of the capital and near the presidential palace. The mutineers chanted "leave leave" and tried to storm the office of Mohammed Mansour al-Ghadraa, their new commander. Al-Ghadraa was appointed in September.

The unit, part of the Interior Ministry, was led for nearly a decade by Saleh's nephew, Yahia Saleh, before he was recently removed. It's not immediately clear whom the mutineers want to replace al-Ghadraa.

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