US embassy in Yemen bombed

At least 16 people are killed in the suicide bombing attack in Sanaa.

    The US embassy in Yemen was attacked
    by two cars, witnesses said [AFP]

    Police cordon

    A vehicle was on fire on the road near the embassy compound's perimeter and police sealed off the area, witnesses said.

    Roads leading to the embassy were closed after the attack.

    Mohammed al-Qadi, a political columnist for the Yemen Times, told Al Jazeera: "The attack came at about 9.30 in the morning, when there were not so many people passing in the streets outside the US embassy.

    "Otherwise, the casualties could have been a lot more."

    US reaction

    Washington accused al-Qaeda of being behind the attack.

    "I think it is safe to say ... the attacks bear all the hallmarks of an al-Qaeda attack," Sean McCormack, the US state department spokesman, said.
      
    George Bush, the US president, said the attack was a bid by extremists to drive the United States out of regions like the Middle East.
      
    "This attack is a reminder that we are at war with extremists who would murder innocent people to achieve their ideological objectives," Bush said as he met with General David Petraeus, the former top US commander in Iraq.
      
    "One objective of these extremists as they kill is to try to cause the United States to lose our nerve and to withdraw from regions of the world, and our message is - is that we want to help  governments survive the extremists, we want people to live normal lives," Bush said.

    High alert

    The US state department had in April ordered all non-essential diplomatic staff to leave the country after an attack on the embassy the previous month.

    A residential compound used by US oil workers in Sanaa had also come under attack from rockets at that time.

    The embassy called on Americans in Yemen to "exercise caution and take prudent security measures, including maintaining a high level of vigilance, avoiding crowds and demonstrations, keeping a low profile, varying times and routes for all travel".

    There have been several attacks by fighters in Yemen in recent years.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Explore how your country voted on global issues since 1946, as the world gears up for the 74th UN General Assembly.

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    We dialled more than 35,000 random phone numbers to paint an accurate picture of displacement across South Sudan.

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Meet the man on a mission to take down Cambodia's timber tycoons and expose a rampant illegal cross-border trade.