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Death toll in Yemen suicide bombing rises to 45

A wounded man is loaded into an ambulance on Dec. 10, 2016, after a suicide bombing attack in Yemen.
(AFP/Getty Images)

A suicide bomber blew himself up at an army base in the southern city of Aden, killing 45 soldiers and wounding another 50, security officials said.

They said the bomber detonated a belt of explosives he was wearing amid hundreds of soldiers lining up to collect their salaries in the city’s Solban army base.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media.

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Waleed Rashed, a soldier at the base, said he arrived at the scene shortly after the attack to find the area littered with bodies and blood.

“I could hear the wounded soldiers screaming for help,” he said.

Private cars were used to carry the wounded to hospitals before ambulances arrived, he added.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which bore the hallmarks of Al Qaeda.

The terror network’s branch in Yemen is thought to be the world’s most active. It is known to have a presence in Aden, where a loose coalition between troops loyal to the internationally recognized government, local militias and jihadi groups is in control.

The troops and jihadi groups are fighting Shiite rebels, who in 2014 seized Yemen’s capital, Sana, and later swept much of northern Yemen. Their advances forced Hadi to flee the country and seek shelter in neighboring Saudi Arabia. A Saudi-led coalition, mostly consisting of Gulf Arab states, subsequently intervened in Yemen, launching a punishing air campaign against the rebels and their allies.

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UPDATES:

10:20 a.m.: This article was updated with a death toll of 45 and additional details from the scene.

This article was originally published at 7:35 a.m.


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