Middle East

Aden airport hit amid reports of return of Yemen gov't

Gunmen attack airport amid reports that embattled government is gearing up to return from Riyadh

Aden airport hit amid reports of return of Yemen gov't


By Zakaria al-Kamaali


Gunmen have attacked the airport in Yemen’s city of Aden late Sunday amid reports that the embattled Yemeni government was preparing to return to the southern city from Saudi Arabia.

"Armed groups attacked the airport with various weapons," a Yemeni security source told Anadolu Agency on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

He said airport guards backed by Saudi-led coalition warplanes had managed to repulse the attackers.

The attack came amid reports that the Yemeni government was preparing to return to Aden, which currently serves as the temporary seat of the government of President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi.

"All government ministers are expected to return to Aden on Monday except for those participating in UN-sponsored peace talks [with the Shia Houthi group] in Kuwait," a government source told Anadolu Agency.

The Yemeni government, however, has yet to officially confirm the reports.

Yemen has been racked by chaos and bloodshed since late 2014, when the Houthis and their allies overran capital Sanaa and other parts of the country, forcing President Hadi and his Saudi-backed government to temporarily flee to Riyadh.

In March of last year, Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies launched a massive military campaign in Yemen aimed at reversing Houthi gains and restoring Hadi’s embattled government.

In April, the Yemeni government and the Houthis entered into UN-sponsored peace talks in Kuwait aimed at resolving the conflict, in which more than 6,400 people have been killed and another 2.5 million forced to flee their homes.

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