Explosion near Yemen’s Aden airport causes ‘at least 12 casualties’

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People look at cars on fire at the site of an explosion outside Aden international airport in Yemen  (REUTERS)
People look at cars on fire at the site of an explosion outside Aden international airport in Yemen (REUTERS)

At least 12 civilians were reportedly killed in an explosion near the entrance of an airport in Yemen, a senior security official said.

On Saturday, reports that the Yemeni government’s interim capital of Aden was hit with a blast emerged about 5pm UK time.

According to Mail Online, an anonymous official said: “Twelve civilians were killed in an explosion” in the vicinity of the airport and “there are also serious injuries” among others.

Witnesses and security sources told Reuters there was casualties.

Immediatley after, it was not clear whether the incident was an attack.

An airport official said a small truck blew up at an outer gate to the airport, while a local official and two security sources said the vehicle was carrying petroleum products.

The blast was strong and was heard across the city. Nearby residents’ windows were smashed.

Aden is the temporary home of Yemen’s internationally-recognised government, which has as part of a coalition backed by Saudi Arabia been fighting the Iran-aligned Houthi group for around seven years.

But tensions have also for years simmered within Aden itself between the government and southern separatist groups.

The government and the Southern Transitional Council (STC) are nominal allies under the Saudi-led coalition.

Earlier this month a car bomb in Aden targeting a convoy carrying the city’s governor - an STC member - killed at least six people and wounded others. The governor survived.

Instability in the south complicates United Nations-led peace efforts to end the war in Yemen, which has killed tens of thousands of people and left 80 per cent of the population needing help.

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