The death toll from a sophisticated attack by Islamic extremists against soldiers in Yemen jumped to 177 Tuesday, three Yemeni security officials told CNN.
Air raids on militant positions since the attack have left at least 42 militants dead in Abyan province, security officials said.
The attack Sunday at an army base by Ansar al-Sharia, which is allied with al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), originally claimed the lives of 90 soldiers and wounded many others.
It "illustrates AQAP's complete disregard for human life," U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a statement.
She vowed that the United States will continue to support Yemen's new President Abdurabu Hadi "and the Yemeni people as they work to realize their aspirations for a brighter and more prosperous future."
The attack was a humiliating defeat to Yemen's army in a power struggle against AQAP.
The militants seized large amounts of weaponry - including rocket launchers, mortars, armored vehicles, and tanks - and appeared to have had help from within the security apparatus, according to Yemeni officials.
The bloodbath took place near Zinjibar, a town on the Arabian Sea where Ansar al-Sharia has been active for nearly a year.FULL STORY