Mar 28, 2011
Sana'a - Security sources said that al-Qaeda militants were responsible for a deadly explosion in southern Yemen on Monday which killed at least 34 people.
The state-run news agency SABA did not give further details, but quoted unnamed security sources who blamed al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) for the attack.
At least 34 people were killed and 52 injured in the blast at a weapons factory in the southern Yemeni province of Abyan, local and medical sources said.
There were three children among those killed, medics added.
The Al Arabiya broadcaster reported that there were 80 people killed in the blast.
The source said dozens of residents went to the factory a day after it was raided by suspected al-Qaeda militants.
The cause for the blast remained unclear.
On Sunday, US Secretary of Defence Robert Gates told ABC that the most active and aggressive branch of al-Qaeda was AQAP, which operates out of Yemen.
'If that government collapses or is replaced by one that is dramatically more weak, then I think we'll face some additional challenges out of Yemen,' he said, referring to calls demanding President Ali Abdullah Saleh step down.
'It's a real problem,' said Gates about a possible power vacuum in Yemen.