Sana’a, Yemen’s capital, has been relatively peaceful as political parties resume negotiations. Al Qaeda-linked militants in south Yemen, however, still maintain control of territory from where they are able to plan and execute attacks.
A suicide bomber targeted the Yemeni defense minister’s convoy in Aden. The attacker detonated the bomb in a tunnel as Defense Minister Major General Mohammed Nasser Ahmed’s convoy passed. At least three soldiers were killed and nine other people injured; the defense minister survived. Al Qaeda militants likely executed the attack.
Fighting is ongoing between the Yemeni military and al Qaeda-linked militants in south Yemen. Local sources report that a soldier from the 119 Infantry Brigade was killed and two others were injured in clashes in Kod. Three militants were reportedly killed in the fighting. The 25th mechanized brigade shelled militant positions near Zinjibar.
The Yemeni military continues to fracture. The 131st Infantry Brigade, which is part of the defected First Armored Division, issued a statement pledging loyalty to the state. Separately, there are reports that a Republican Guard company defected from the regime.
Tens of thousands of people protest in the streets of Sana’a. Protests occurred in at least eight governorates. The UN Security Council issued a statement Monday expressing concern over the worsening humanitarian and security situation in Yemen.
The ongoing political crisis in the capital has placed the Yemeni state at risk of a broader armed conflict. Further, the Yemeni state has been undergoing fragmentation. Al Qaeda has seized control of territory in south Yemen and the current situation has increased the organization’s operating space in the country.