At least 71 dead in vehicle bombing attack, ISIS claims responsibility

Cheryl Sanders
August 30, 2016

People gather at the scene following an attack by a suicide bomber who drove a vehicle laden with explosives into a compound run by local militias in the port city of Aden, Yemen August 29, 2016.

In eastern Yemen, forces loyal to Hadi, backed by troops from the UAE, drove members of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula from the city of Mukalla in a military operation in May.

Security officials said the attacker drove a auto bomb into a gathering of army recruits at a school in northern Aden early on Monday. Claiming the attack, ISIS stated that "60 people were killed in a militia recruitment center" in what was one of the deadliest massacres perpetrated to date by the terror group in Yemen.

"Around 8:15 (a.m.), we heard a great explosion that shook the building of our hospital, and we came to know that it occurred at a military camp", said the group's communication officer in Aden, Malak Shaher, adding that the injuries ranged from critical to minor. Security forces managed to kill the other jihadis but not before they had killed at least 18 people and wounded another 26.

Last month, the governor of the southern Yemeni city of Aden survived a vehicle bomb attack targeting his convoy, the latest attempt on the city's top official.

Later on Monday, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group claimed responsibility for the attack. But on July 20, four policemen were killed in a bombing attack in Aden that was claimed by IS.

Troops retook other towns across Abyan but have been met by fierce resistance in key a al-Qaeda stronghold, Al-Mahfid, a town which lies further east, security sources said.

The militants still have a presence in areas surrounding the recaptured towns and control large parts of neighbouring Shabwa province, the sources say.

The Saudi-led coalition intervened in Yemen in March a year ago and have helped government forces push the rebels out of Aden and four other southern provinces since July 2015.

The war in Yemen has also impacted security in Saudi Arabia, where shelling from the kingdom's impoverished neighbour killed three Saudi children and wounded nine other people on Sunday.

The Arab coalition has also stepped up its air raids in Yemen since peace talks collapsed.

The recruits, which made up the overwhelming majority of the casualties, were signing up to be deployed overseas to Djibouti and Eritrea for military, before eventually being redeployed back to the Saudi border to fight Yemen's Shi'ite Houthis.

Over 6,600 people hvae been killed in Yemen since 2015 and over 80 per cent are left in need of humanitarian aid.

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