Yemen Denies Reports of Third ISIS Bombing in Mukallah

47 Killed in Two Attacks on Sunday

by Jason Ditz, May 16, 2016

A pair of major suicide attacks against a police recruitment center in the Yemeni port of Mukallah killed at least 47 people on Sunday, attacks which ISIS claimed credit for. Concerns were that the security situation was getting even worse, with reports of a third suicide bombing against the city’s security headquarters today.

It’s not clear what, if anything, actually happened however, as Reuters, one of several outlets to report the bombing initially, issued a retraction citing the local military command insisting that no such incident had taken place at all.

It’s not wholly clear if that means that no bombing happened, or if they were only disputing that a suicide bombing happened. The locals who reported the incident to the media were told to retract their accounts entirely, but haven’t offered a new explanation.

Mukallah was the largest city under control of al-Qaeda in Yemen until a couple of weeks ago, when pro-Saudi forces expelled them. The ISIS attacks both show that the city is far from secure, and likely represent an attempt by ISIS to supplant AQAP as the primary Islamist group in the area.

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