Suicide bomber kills 35 Yemen soldiers

A wounded Yemeni man is taken off an ambulance on Dec 10, 2016 after a suicide bomber killed 35 soldiers.
A wounded Yemeni man is taken off an ambulance on Dec 10, 2016 after a suicide bomber killed 35 soldiers.PHOTO: AFP
Yemenis gather around bodies lying covered on the ground on December 10, 2016 after a suicide bomber killed 35 soldiers.
Yemenis gather around bodies lying covered on the ground on December 10, 2016 after a suicide bomber killed 35 soldiers.PHOTO: AFP

ADEN (AFP) - A suicide bomber killed 35 soldiers and wounded around 50 others on Saturday (Dec 10) at a military camp in Yemen's southern city of Aden, where Islamic militants are active, military and medical sources said.

The attacker detonated his explosives belt as hundreds of troops gathered to receive their monthly pay at the barracks in Al-Sawlaban near the city's international airport, a military source said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

Yemeni authorities have for months pressed a campaign against jihadists who remain active in the south and east of the war-torn country.

The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group and its terrorist rival Al-Qaeda have taken advantage of a conflict between the government and the Huthi rebels, who control the capital Sanaa, to bolster their presence across much of the south.

ISIS and Al-Qaeda have carried out a spate of attacks in Aden, Yemen's second city and headquarters of the internationally recognised government whose forces retook the port from the Huthis last year.

Al-Qaeda has long been the dominant jihadist force in Yemen, located next to oil-flush Saudi Arabia and key shipping lanes, but experts say ISIS is seeking to supplant its extremist rival.

In August, an ISIS militant rammed his explosives-laden car into an army recruiting centre in Aden, killing 71 people in the deadliest militant attack on the city in over a year.

On Monday, Yemeni authorities arrested eight suspected ISIS militants implicated in a spate of attacks targeting security personnel in the city this year.

A Saudi-led coalition has since March 2015 supported loyalist forces fighting the Huthi rebels.