An Arabia-Ain’t-Felix Update, following al-Qaeda’s takeover of a third town earlier this week. The dual attacks, the targets, and the tactic of suicide bombing all suggest al-Qaeda’s involvement. “Suicide blasts kill 11 tribesmen in southern Yemen,” by Ahmed al-Haj for the Associated Press, August 21:
SANAA, Yemen (AP) “” A pair of suicide bombings targeting anti-al-Qaida tribesmen in southern Yemen killed 11 people on Sunday, tribal and security officials said.
Both blasts took place in Abyan province, where al-Qaida-linked militants have been taking advantage of a breakdown in security linked to Yemen’s political turmoil to take over towns and large swaths of territory in the south.
In the deadliest attack, a suicide bomber slammed an explosives-laden car into a checkpoint manned by anti-al-Qaida tribesmen, killing eight and wounding 20.
A suicide bomber carried out the second attack, blowing himself up in the middle of a gathering of tribesmen, the officials said. Three men were killed in the second attack.
The officials said suspicion immediately fell on al-Qaida-linked militants in the area who have routinely targeted tribesmen hostile to the terror network or formed militias to fight its members.
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.
Yemen is home to one of the world’s most active al-Qaida branches, known as al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula.