Nine feared dead as bomb rocks Yemen capital

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A CAR BOMB killed up to nine people when it detonated near several foreign embassies and diplomatic residences in the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, yesterday. Hours earlier explosions shook two other towns in the south of the country, agencies report.

No diplomats were injured in the Sanaa bombing, which destroyed a supermarket in the centre of the capital, but officials said two Yemeni security guards had been killed, one at the store and the other at the offices of Canadian Occidental Petroleum. Sources close to the government said as many as nine people had died.

Windows were broken at the British embassy, about 300 yards from the site of the explosion. The ambassador, Victor Henderson, said the damage was slight. British diplomatic residences had also been affected, but Mr Henderson said damage to the Turkish embassy and the French ambassador's residence was worse.

Hours earlier, a bomb exploded near the National Bank building in the southern port city of Aden. In Zinjibar, a bomb went off in front of the prosecutor's office. Nobody was hurt in these two incidents.

The Interior Ministry said police were interrogating several people, although it said initial findings indicated no political motive. No one had claimed responsibility by late yesterday.

Earlier this month, an appeals court in Zinjibar upheld death sentences for an Islamic militant and one of his followers convicted of abducting 16 Western tourists, four of whom died during a botched rescue. Zein Al- Abidine al-Mihdar, head of the Aden-Abyan Islamic Army, said his followers would exact revenge if he was executed.