Dozens killed by Yemen mosque bombs

Published: Friday 20th March 2015 by The News Editor

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At least 45 people have been killed and 100 injured in suicide attacks on mosques in Yemen, medical officials said.

The attacks in Sanaa targeted mosques frequented by Shiite rebels who have controlled the capital since September.

A report on the rebel-owned Al-Masirah TV channel said the bombers attacked the Badr and al-Hashoosh mosques during midday prayers, the most crowded time of the week.

Witnesses said that at least two suicide bombers attacked inside the Badr mosque. One walked inside and detonated his device, causing panic as dozens of worshippers rushed towards the outside gates. A second suicide bomber then attacked amid the panicked crowds trying to escape.

One witness at the al-Hashoosh mosque, in Sanaa’s northern district, said he was thrown two metres by the blast.

“The heads, legs and arms of the dead people were scattered on the floor of the mosque,” Mohammed al-Ansi said, adding: “Blood is running like a river.”

Mr al-Ansi added that many of those who did not die in the explosion were seriously injured by shattered glass falling from the mosque’s windows.

The Shiite TV network aired footage from inside al-Hashoosh mosque, where volunteers were using blankets to carry away victims. One of the dead included a small child.

The attacks came a day after intense gun battles in the southern city of Aden, between rival troops loyal to Yemen’s former and current president, left 13 dead and forced closure of the city’s international airport.

The Shiite rebels, known as Houthis, swept down from their northern strongholds and seized the capital in September. Allied with ousted former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, they now control at least nine of Yemen’s 21 provinces.

Earlier this year they put Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, the western-backed president, under house arrest. Mr Hadi has since fled to Aden where he established a temporary capital and maintains he is still the legitimate president.

Published: Friday 20th March 2015 by The News Editor

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