ISIL bombings kill at 45 at Aden military camp
Aden // Twin suicide bombings by ISIL militants killed at least 45 people at a military base in Aden on Monday.
The blasts were the latest attacks by extremists targeting Yemenis signing up to join the military in the south of the country controlled by the internationally recognised government.
The first attacker detonated his explosives near the house of the commander of Badr military base in Khor Maksar district killing 35 men who were applying to join the military, a security source said.
A second bombing inside the base killed 10 people, including soldiers, and injured several others.
The base commander, Brig Gen Abdullah Al Subaihi, was unharmed in the attack. ISIL said it had targeted “apostate soldiers” at the army recruitment centre.
A resident in Aden described the scene of the Badr explosions as “horrible”, saying body parts had been blown dozens of metres away. Abandoned slippers and sandals, were scattered across the area.
“They came to complete the procedure of their recruitment and receive their first salary,” he said, speaking of the young men who had gathered outside the army centre.
Aden resident Ramzi Al Fadhli said “wailing filled the air” as women identified the remains of relatives at Al Jumhuriyah Hospital, where at least 32 bodies were taken.
The hospital manager, Ali Abdullah Saleh, said the number of casualties was expected to increase.
There has seen a spate of attacks in Aden after the liberation of the city from Houthi rebels in June last year, most of them claimed by either Al Qaeda or ISIL.
ISIL claimed a similar attack in Mukalla earlier this month when at least 40 people were killed and dozens injured by a suicide bomber who also targeted applicants queuing at a military recruitment centre.
Mukalla, the capital of Hadramawt province, was liberated in April by Yemeni and Arab coalition forces, including the UAE, from Al Qaeda militants who had occupied the city for a year.
The extremist groups have taken advantage of the war between the Yemeni government and the Iran backed-Houthi rebels who seized the capital Sanaa in 2014.
The Yemeni ISIL affiliate has emerged as a new rival of Al Qaeda in Yemen, using the chaos in the country to build up a strong base of support in several southern areas.
UN-sponsored peace talks between the government and rebels resumed on Monday in Kuwait after they had broken off a week ago.
The government had demanded a written pledge from the rebels and their allies recognising an April 2015 UN Security Council resolution calling for their withdrawal from the capital and other territories, as well as the legitimacy of president Abdrabu Mansur Hadi.
* With reporting from Associated Press and Agence France-Presse
Updated: May 23, 2016 04:00 AM