2 mosques attacked by suicide bombers, 77 Muslims killed

SHAFAQNA – According to medics, Muslim faithfuls were attending noon prayers at the Badr and al-Hashoosh mosques when at least three attackers struck.

Reports say two mosques situated in  Yemen’s capital, Sana’a, has been attacked by suicide bombers, killing at least 77 people and wounding 121 others.

According to medics, Muslim faithfuls were attending noon prayers at the Badr and al-Hashoosh mosques when at least three attackers struck.

The mosques are used mainly by supporters of the Zaidi Shia-led Houthi movement, which controls Sana’a.

ISIS which set up a branch in Yemen in November, said it was behind the attacks.

BBC reports that a statement from the group was published on Twitter accounts known as reliable sources for IS propaganda. If confirmed, the attacks would be the first carried out by IS in Yemen.

There are also severe tensions between the Houthi rebels and various powerful, armed elements in Yemen, including militants from Al-Qaeda.

Witnesses said at least two suicide bombers attacked the Badr mosque, in the south of Sana’a.

One entered the building and detonated his explosive device among dozens of worshippers, the witnesses added. Survivors then sought to escape through the main gates, where the second bomber was waiting.

Al Jazeera reported that prominent Houthi cleric al-Murtada bin Zayd al-Mahatwari, the imam of the Badr mosque, was among those killed.

A man who was at the al-Hashoosh mosque, in a northern district of the capital, said he was thrown about 2m (6ft) by the blast.

“The heads, legs and arms of the dead people were scattered on the floor of the mosque,” Mohammed al-Ansi told Associated Press news agency, adding that “blood is running like a river”.

Ansi said that many of those who were not killed by the explosion were seriously injured by shattered glass that fell from the mosque’s windows.

Al-Masirah TV channel broadcast footage from inside the al-Hashoosh mosque showing volunteers using bloodied blankets to carry away victims. Bodies were also lined up in the prayer hall.

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