Suicide attack hits Yemen govt security headquarters: official

Aden (AFP) –


A suicide attack hit security headquarters in the Yemeni government bastion of Aden Sunday, sparking clashes between armed militants and security forces in the war torn country, an official said.

The official, a high-ranking member of the security forces, said the attack in the central city of Khor Maksar was likely the work of operatives loyal to Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), the radical network's Yemen branch.

Yemen's complex war pits the Saudi-backed government against a rebel camp allied with Iran.

The war has allowed Al-Qaeda to flourish in the south of the country, where Yemeni forces allied with a Saudi-led coalition have closed in on AQAP strongholds in recent weeks.

The United States, which considers AQAP the most dangerous branch of Al-Qaeda, also regularly conducts drone strikes on southern Yemen.

More than 8,600 people have been killed in Yemen since Saudi Arabia and its allies joined the war in 2015 to support government forces, according to the World Health Organization.