An explosion has reportedly rocked Sanaa, the capital of Yemen, and pictures of ravaged buildings have appeared on social media that include reports claiming the blast was caused by a Saudi-led airstrike.
Images of destroyed buildings, partly still aflame, have emerged on social media, with some people alleging the devastation was caused by a Saudi-led coalition strike.
There has been no official confirmation as to what exactly caused the destruction, however. Yet some people allege that dozens of civilians were killed and scores injured in the alleged bombardment, a witness told Xinhua news agency.
Sputnik news agency was also told by a source at the scene that the incident was caused by a Saudi-led bombardment that left dozens of people dead or injured, adding that the alleged airstrike had targeted a hall where Houthi rebels had been paying their last respects to the father of the rebels’ Interior Minister.
The total count of those injured and dead may reach the hundreds, the source told Sputnik. Tensions in Yemen spiraled after President Ali Abdullah Saleh was deposed in 2012 and his Houthi supporters – reportedly aided by Iran – seized the capital city of Sanaa in 2014. Houthi forces then advanced from Sanaa towards the south, seizing large parts of Yemen and forcing current Sunni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi into exile.
In March of 2015, the Saudi-led coalition began airstrikes in order to stop Houthi advances and reinstate Hadi to power.
By late summer of that year, Saudi-led forces had launched a ground operation as well.