US forces in Mideast put on high alert

The Pentagon has ordered all American forces stationed in the Mideast are on high alert in the wake of Thursday's bombing in Yemen. 

"The United States military has increased its regional alert status following the terrorist attack on the Yemeni Republic Ministry of Defense," according to a department statement issued Friday. 

American forces in the region are "fully prepared to support our Yemeni partners in the wake of this incident," a senior defense official said in the statement. 

At least 20 people were killed and dozens more injured in the attack, according to The Associated Press. 

Nearly a dozen gunmen were also killed in a subsequent firefight between Yemeni troops and militants who arrived minutes after the suicide bomber detonated his deadly ordnance. 

“We extend our sincere condolences to the families of the victims,” State Department spokeswoman Margie Harf said Friday. 

 “We stand with Yemen against this violence and remain firmly committed to supporting the Yemeni people as they seek to conclude the National Dialogue and move forward peacefully with Yemen’s historic democratic transition," she added.