A suicide bomber killed at least 50 Yemeni soldiers at a base in the city of Aden, a local security official said, in another major attack claimed by Islamic State on forces allied to a Saudi-led military coalition. The attacker blew himself up as the troops were waiting to collect their salaries, the government sources added, wounding around 70 others as they lined up to collect salaries at the entrance to the Sawlaban base on the outskirts of the city. Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack in a message posted online.
The Yemeni branch of the militant group based in Iraq and Syria has carried out many deadly bombings around troops in the southern port city, which is under the control of the internationally recognised government in exile in Saudi Arabia. The Kingdom intervened in Yemen’s civil war in March 2015 to fight the government’s foes in the Iran-allied Houthi movement but have failed to dislodge the group from the capital Sanaa despite thousands of air strikes.
Houthi forces were pushed out of Aden and much of Yemen’s south last summer, but the government and coalition troops have struggled to enforce their control as Al Qaeda and Islamic State militants use the security vacuum to carry out attacks. At least 10,000 people have been killed in the 20-month conflict, which has unleashed a humanitarian crisis on the impoverished country.