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IS Suicide Bomber Kills 35 Yemen Soldiers

A Yemeni fighter from the separatist Southern Movement, loyal to the government forces, stands guard in Aden, Yemen. (AFP photo/Saleh Al-Obeidi)
A Yemeni fighter from the separatist Southern Movement, loyal to the government forces, stands guard in Aden, Yemen. (AFP photo/Saleh Al-Obeidi)

A suicide bomber killed 35 soldiers and wounded about 50 on Saturday at a military camp in Yemen's southern city of Aden, military and medical sources said.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack.

The bomber detonated his explosives belt as hundreds of troops gathered to receive their monthly pay at the barracks in Al-Sawlaban near the city's international airport, a military source said.

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"A martyr from the Islamic State detonated his explosives belt in Al-Sawlaban military camp in Aden during a gathering of the Yemeni army," the IS-affiliated Amaq news outlet said.

Yemeni authorities have for months pressed a campaign against jihadists who remain active in the south and east of the war-torn country.

IS and its jihadist rival Al-Qaida have taken advantage of a conflict between the government and the Huthi rebels, who control the capital Sanaa, to bolster their presence across much of the south.

The two groups have carried out a spate of attacks in Aden, Yemen's second city and headquarters of the internationally recognized government whose forces retook the port from the Huthis last year.

Al-Qaida has long been the dominant jihadist force in Yemen, located next to oil-flush Saudi Arabia and key shipping lanes, but experts say IS is seeking to supplant its extremist rival.

In August, an IS militant rammed his explosives-laden car into an army recruiting center in Aden, killing 71 people in the deadliest jihadist attack on the city in over a year.

On Monday, Yemeni authorities arrested eight suspected IS jihadists implicated in a spate of attacks targeting security personnel in the city this year.

A Saudi-led coalition has supported loyalist forces fighting the Huthis since March 2015. 

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