ADEN , Yemen, Jan. 4 (UPI) -- A battle in Aden, Yemen, between pro-government troops and suspected Islamic State militants killed at least 17 people and led to a curfew in the city.
The fight Sunday lasted several hours in the city's port district after troops loyal to President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi attempted to take control of the area, seized earlier by IS and al-Qaida militants using the area for lucrative smuggling activities. Officials said the militants refused to hand over the port to the government forces.
On Thursday a drive-by shooting killed Ahmed al-Idrisi, a pro-government militia leader after he agreed to government control of the port; security officials said he publicly backed the government but had private deals with anti-government forces.
The city government said the curfew would last from Monday evening to Tuesday morning.
Yemen has been involved in a civil war since rebels captured Sanaa, the capital, in 2014, driving Hadi into exile. A Saudi-led coalition began a military campaign in early 2015 and restored Hadi to power, and Aden, the provisional capital, has been the site of conflict as al-Qaida and IS attempts to extend its influence there.
At least 5,700 people have been killed in the war.