7 JAN 2014: At least 37 people have been killed and 66 others injured by a car bomb blast outside a police academy in Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, officials say.
The vehicle exploded beside dozens of cadets and people standing in line to enrol at the academy. Some unconfirmed reports said it was a suicide attack.
Afterwards, body parts and debris from the car were strewn across the street.
There has so far been no claim of responsibility, but an offshoot of al-Qaeda has carried out similar attacks.
Yemen has experienced a wave of violence in recent months, with militants from al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) battling Shia Houthi rebels who have taken control of the capital.
Wednesday’s bombing took place early in the morning in a central part of Sanaa near the central bank and the defence ministry building.
The explosion was heard across the city and a large plume of smoke was seen rising from the scene.
The victims included many cadets at the police academy and people who had been waiting in line to enrol, as well as passersby, officials said.
“We were all gathering and… [the car] exploded right next to all of the police college classmates,” Jamil al-Khaleedi told the Associated Press.
“It went off among all of them.”
A paramedic at the scene described the situation as “catastrophic”.
“We arrived to find bodies piled on top of each other,” he told Reuters news agency.
The US embassy in Yemen condemned the attack, saying it “reveals the nihilistic vision and depravity of terror groups operating in Yemen”.