Car bomb targets Houthis in Yemen capital
ADEN // A car bomb exploded after Friday prayers at a mosque held by Houthi rebels the centre of Sanaa. The targets were Houthis leaders who were among the worshippers in Bilal mosque but the bomb did not go off until after everyone had left, meaning there were no casualties.
No group has admitted the attack but the authorities are convinced it was the work of extremists. A source in the interior ministry in rebel-controlled capital said the bomb was intended to show that extremists are very much present in the Yemeni capital.
“This bombing is a clear message that there are terrorist groups in Sanaa so we have to intensify the security in the city,” he said.
“We are used to seeing terrorist groups target military camps in the south [of Yemen] but if they are targetting mosques, people will be too afraid even to come and pray.”
Extremists have exploited Yemen’s 16-month civil war between the Houthis and supporters of president Abdrabu Mansur Hadi, who is backed by a Saudi-led Arab coalition, to strike at both sides.
The Houthis have controlled Sanaa since 2014 when they drove Mr Hadi and his government into exile in Saudi Arabia.