The Islamic State is taking responsibility for an attack that killed the governor of Aden in Yemen on Sunday.
Reuters reports that Jaafar Mohammed Saad and six of his aides were killed by a car bomb as he was headed to work.
“Islamic State, in a statement posted on a messaging service it uses, said it detonated a car laden with explosives aimed at Saad’s convoy in Aden’s Tawahi district and promised more operations against ‘the heads of apostasy in Yemen.’ A local official and residents said earlier on Sunday a suicide bomber rammed his vehicle into the governor’s car.
“The group’s local branch has stepped up operations since the outbreak of civil war in Yemen, emerging as a forceful rival to Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), the main militant group in the country in recent years.”
The BBC reports that with the help of the Saudi-led coalition, Aden was recaptured by government forces earlier this year.
The network reports:
“The BBC’s Arab affairs editor Sebastian Usher says the killing of Mr Saad is a blow to Saudi-led efforts to re-establish Aden as a secure base for the government which spent months in exile in Saudi Arabia.
“Mr Saad was a significant figure not just as the administrative head of Aden, but for the role he played in driving Houthi rebels out of the port city earlier this year, our correspondent says.
“But Aden has remained vulnerable to violence with jihadists carrying out regular attacks. The claim by IS introduces another dangerous factor into the equation, our correspondent says, because like the long established al-Qaeda franchise in Yemen, IS has gained strength from the violence and chaos of the past nine months of all-out conflict.”