Yemen: Severe explosion at Aden airport after new government arrives

A bloody war for the leadership of the country has been raging in Yemen for almost six years. A government backed by Saudi Arabia under President Abed Rabbo Mansur Hadi is fighting against the Iranian-backed Houthi militia. There has now been a major explosion during the arrival of Hadi’s newly formed government.

According to witness reports, the incident occurred shortly after an airplane from Saudi Arabia landed in the port city of Aden. According to Information Minister Muammar Al-Erjani, the head of government and the cabinet are doing well. “We assure our people that all cabinet members are safe,” he wrote on Twitter. It was a “cowardly terrorist attack by the Iran-supported Houthi militia”.

The explosion, which eyewitnesses said was accompanied by several gunshots, shattered windows; several people have been injured, as seen on social networks. The background and the extent of the incident initially remained unclear. The news agencies Reuters and AP report, citing government circles, that there have been several deaths.

The UN Special Envoy for Yemen, Martin Griffiths, wrote on Twitter: “I condemn the attack on Aden airport upon the arrival of the cabinet and the killing and injury of many innocent civilians.” His condolences go out to all the survivors of the victims. “This unacceptable act of violence is a tragic reminder of the importance of urgently bringing Yemen back on the road to peace.”

Settle the power struggle

President Hadi swore in the 24 ministers of the newly formed government in a ceremony in Saudi Arabia on Saturday. The new government consists of representatives from both the North and the South and follows an agreement that the conflicting parties agreed on in Saudi Arabia in 2019. The new alliance of the government of Yemen with the separatists of the south is supposed to settle their power struggle in the civil war country. According to a source from the Yemeni government, the machine from Riyadh landed in the middle of an “intensive security operation” in Aden.

The country on the Arabian Peninsula is one of the poorest countries in the world. The civil war, in which an alliance led by Saudi Arabia has been fighting the Houthis since 2015, has significantly increased the suffering of the people. 24 million people – around 80 percent of the population – are now dependent on some form of humanitarian aid. Tens of thousands of people have been killed since the beginning of the war, and millions of residents had to flee. Famine and epidemics are also affecting the Yemenis.

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