İrem UZUN -TDO- At least 13 people have been killed in an attack at the airport in Yemen's city of Aden as the new government arrived from Saudi Arabia, security sources and medics say. There was at least one explosion as ministers were preparing to disembark. Mohamed al-Roubid, deputy head of Aden’s health office, told The Associated Press that at least 16 people were killed in the explosion and 60 were wounded. Later, the interior ministry raised the casualty toll to at least 22 dead and 50 wounded.
Images shared on social media showed blood, rubble and broken glass strewn near the airport building and at least two bodies, one of them charred, on the ground. In another image a man was seen trying to help up another whose clothes were torn.
The attack marks a grim start for Yemen’s unity government sworn in last week in Saudi Arabia. The reshuffle was designed to mend the dangerous rift between the internationally recognised government led by the president, Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi, and the separatist Southern Transitional Council (STC), the organization in charge of Aden.
Yemen information minister Moammar Al-Eryani said opposition Houthi rebels were behind the attack. Iranian-backed Houthi militants have been constantly fighting the Yemeni government, with support from Saudi Arabia, for almost seven years. "We assure our people that all cabinet members are safe and the cowardly terrorist attack by Iran-backed Houthi militia on Aden airport will not deter us from our duty and our life isn't more valuable than other Yemenis," Al-Eryani tweeted.