At least 22 people have been killed and more than 50 wounded in an attack at the airport in the southern Yemeni city of Aden, officials say.
There was at least one explosion shortly after a plane carrying the war-torn country’s newly formed government arrived from neighbouring Saudi Arabia.
Aid workers and officials were among the casualties. But the prime minister said he and his cabinet were “fine”.
The information minister accused Houthi rebels of a “cowardly terrorist act”.
Yemen has been devastated by a conflict that escalated in 2015, when a Saudi-led coalition of Arab states launched a military operation to defeat the Houthis and restore President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi’s rule.
The fighting has reportedly left more than 110,000 people dead; triggered the world’s worst humanitarian disaster, with millions on the brink of famine; and left the country even more vulnerable to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Video footage of Wednesday’s incident showed that there was a large blast as passengers began leaving the plane that had flown the new cabinet to Aden.
A crowd that had gathered on the tarmac to welcome the ministers fled as thick smoke billowed from the airport terminal. The sound of gunfire was heard soon afterwards.
An AFP news agency correspondent reported hearing at least two blasts in total, as did Minister for International Co-operation Najeeb al-Awj.
The cause was not clear, but a security source told Reuters news agency that three mortar shells landed on the terminal.
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said a member of staff was killed in Wednesday’s attack, and that two others were unaccounted for and three were injured.
“Our staff were transiting through the airport with other civilians. This is a tragic day for us and the people of #Yemen,” it tweeted.
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