Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Suicide bomber kills at least 30 at Yemen police enrollment - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
Select Page
A police investigator collects evidence from wreckage at the scene of a car bomb outside a police academy in Sana'a, Yemen, on January 7, 2015. (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed)

A police investigator collects evidence from wreckage at the scene of a car bomb outside a police academy in Sana’a, Yemen, on January 7, 2015. (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed)

Sana’a, AP—A suicide bomber driving a minibus full of explosives killed at least 30 people Wednesday morning as cadets gathered to enroll at a police academy in the heart of Yemen’s capital, Sana’a, security officials and witnesses said.

The blast wounded dozens of people, officials initially said. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they weren’t authorized to brief journalists.

At the scene of the blast, the dead and wounded lay on a sidewalk against a wall. Water sprayed by firefighters to extinguish the blaze mixed with their pooled blood. A charred taxi cab smoked near what remained of the minibus, yards from a gate for the police academy.

A police officer’s certificate sat in a pool of blood and water, soaked crimson. The bomber struck as lines of cadets waited outside of the academy, preparing to enroll, witnesses said.

“What happened is we were all gathering and . . . [the bomber] exploded right next to all of the police college classmates,” eyewitness Jamil Al-Khaleedi told The Associated Press. “It went off among all of them, and they flew through the air.”

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. Yemen’s local Al-Qaeda branch, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), targeted in frequent US drone strikes in the country, has carried out similar attacks in the past. Washington considers AQAP to be the world’s most dangerous branch of the terror network as it has been linked to several failed attacks on the US homeland.

The blast comes as Shi’ite Houthi movement seized large areas of Yemen, including Sana’a, late last year as part of a protracted power struggle with President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi. Their critics view them as a proxy for Shi’ite Iran, charges the group denies. Al-Qaeda militants have targeted the Houthis in bombings in the past.

An Al-Qaeda suicide bomber killed at least 24 people on December 31 in an attack on Houthis as they commemorated the birth of the Prophet Muhammad. The crowd at the academy Wednesday included both Houthi rebels and police cadets, witnesses said.

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

More Posts

Follow Me:
FacebookGoogle PlusYouTube