A suicide bomber yesterday blew himself up during prayers at a mosque for the Eid al-Adha holiday, killing 25 people in Sana’a, security officials said.
Dozens were wounded in the blast at the al-Bolayli mosque, which is located in an area where many people support the Shiite Houthi rebels who control the capital, the officials said.
The security officials said the suicide bomber placed an explosive device in his shoe, causing an initial explosion. As worshipers rushed to the door, he detonated himself in the middle of the crowd.
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief reporters.
There were puddles of blood and debris outside the mosque, whose ornate facade was damaged.
Police and some Houthi fighters came to inspect the aftermath.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but it appeared to resemble previous bombings by Islamic State that have killed hundreds of Zaydis — a branch of Shiite Islam that the group, previously known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, considers to be heretical.
Eid al-Adha, the Feast of the Sacrifice, the most important holiday of the Muslim calendar, is celebrated by congregations at mosques.
The Iran-allied Houthis seized Sana’a a year ago and forced Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, into exile in Saudi Arabia. Since March, the Saudis have led an Arab alliance trying to restore Hadi to power and drive the Houthis back to their northern stronghold.
The Islamic State has exploited resulting conflict to expand its operations.
It was the second attack targeting a mosque run by the Zaydi group in Saan’a this month.
In other developments, Dutch diplomats in Geneva want the top UN human rights official to send a mission to monitor and report on possible rights violations in Yemen. The Netherlands tabled a resolution at the UN’s Human Rights Council in Geneva in the face of another cosponsored by Saudi Arabia
The Arab resolution asks the human rights official to provide “technical assistance” to Yemen’s government.
The Dutch move puts the US in a position of having to decide between resolutions by two allies. The US ambassador to the council had no immediate comment.
Additional reporting by Reuters
Henry Tong (湯偉雄) and Elaine To (杜依蘭) were preparing to spend their first wedding anniversary in separate prison cells until their acquittal for rioting during Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protests. There were gasps and tears of relief in court on Friday last week as a judge declared prosecutors had failed to prove that the couple took part in clashes with police in July last year. The pair walked free in a ruling that has potential consequences for hundreds of other protesters facing similar charges. However, they have a long journey ahead as they try to rebuild their lives and business. “We have already been punished,”
WARNINGS OVER COMPLACENCY: The curves of new infections in numerous countries is climbing, while others see the the first new infections in months Spikes in COVID-19 infections in Asia have dispelled any notion that the region might be over the worst, with Australia and India yesterday reporting record daily infections, Vietnam fretting over a new surge and North Korea urging vigilance. Asian nations had largely prided themselves on rapidly containing initial outbreaks after the coronavirus emerged in central China late last year, but flare-ups this month have shown the danger of complacency. “We’ve got to be careful not to slip into some idea that there’s some golden immunity that Australia has in relation to this virus,” Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters. Australia recorded its
‘COVIDIOTS’: Politicians condemned the protest that came amid surging infections in the country, while a marcher said government-induced fear weakened the body Loudly chanting their opposition to masks and vaccines, thousands of people on Saturday gathered in Berlin to protest against COVID-19 restrictions before being dispersed by police. Police put turnout at about 20,000 — well below the 500,000 organizers had announced as they urged a “day of freedom” from months of virus curbs. Despite Germany’s comparatively low toll, authorities are concerned at a rise in infections over the past few weeks and politicians took to social media to criticize the rally as irresponsible. “We are the second wave,” shouted the crowd, a mixture of hard left and right and conspiracy theorists, as they converged
The Australian government yesterday said that it plans to give Google and Facebook three months to negotiate with media businesses fair pay for news content. In releasing a draft of a mandatory code of conduct, Canberra aims to succeed where other nations have failed in making tech firms pay for news siphoned from commercial media companies. Australian Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said that Google and Facebook would be the first platforms targeted by the proposed legislation, but others could follow. “It’s about a fair go for Australian news media businesses, it’s about ensuring that we have increased competition, increased consumer protection and a sustainable