Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 20 September 2019

Suicide attack kills three members of Yemen security forces in Aden

In a separate attack, terrorists struck a second target with roadside bomb

The talks will look at tensions in Aden, which has recently been hit by fighting. AFP
The talks will look at tensions in Aden, which has recently been hit by fighting. AFP

A suicide bombing killed three members of Yemeni security forces in the southern port city of Aden on Friday, a day after the UAE said it had carried out air strikes against terrorist organisations in the southern port city. There are increasing concerns that fighting in Aden will lead to an uptick in terror attacks and Al Qaeda activity.

In a separate attack, the military head of the Security Belt force survived a roadside bomb attack on his convoy in central Aden that severely injured five of his guards.

Security sources said the suicide bomber drove a motorcycle packed with explosives into a vehicle at a roundabout in the city's Daar Saad district, killing three people inside and wounding several others including civilians at a market nearby.

There was there was no immediate claim of responsibility for the bombing but a security official blamed the attack on Al Qaeda, which carried out frequent bombings and assassinations in Aden in the years immediately after it was liberated from Houthi rebels at the start of Yemen's civil war in 2015.

The Saudi-led coalition supporting the Yemeni government, which includes the UAE, helped restore security in the city and has targeted Al Qaeda and ISIS in other areas of southern Yemen. UAE forces and Yemeni forces trained by the UAE have been targeting Al Qaeda and extremist militants in Yemen.

Friday's attacks come amid infighting between forces allied to the government and those affiliated to the Southern Transitional Council. The targets in both bombings were affiliated to the STC.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE have called for the government and the STC to attend reconciliation talks in Jeddah so that they can resume their alliance against the Houthi rebels. Although both sides have agreed to take part, the talks have been delayed by repeated clashes in Aden and other southern cities. The STC had voiced its readiness for talks but government-affiliated forces restarted fighting on Wednesday.

The ongoing clashes in Aden have also complicated UN attempts to find a political solution to Yemen's conflict. A truce in the vital port city of Hodeidah has still to be fully implemented more than eight months after it was agreed at UN-brokered talks in Sweden.

Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom said on Friday that she would be travelling to the Middle East in an attempt to relaunch talks between Yemen's government and the country's Iran-backed Houthi rebels.

Ms Wallstrom told Swedish Radio that she wanted to "speak with as many people as possible" during visits to Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Oman and Jordan, and planned to meet UN officials.

She said the peace deal reached in Stockholm last December was "fragile".

Updated: August 30, 2019 05:54 PM

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