Military leader targeted with bomb [Archives:2005/837/Front Page]

April 28 2005

Mohammed bin Sallam
A bomb was hurled at the motorcade of a military leader – whose name was not revealed by Ministry of Defense – on Monday morning, April 25, opposite customs head-office and the Italian Ambassador's residence.

Perpetrators who were in a car fled the scene, eyewitnesses said.

The grenade exploded and injured a number of pedestrians while the military man escaped safely with his armored vehicle.

“At 11:30 a.m. on Monday, a person hurled a grenade at a car belonging to the Ministry of Defense while it was driving past the gate of customs head-office in the city of Sana'a,” a security source said following the incident.

” Security elements captured the attacker who himself got injured and transferred him to a hospital for treatment (where he later died according to the same source).”

“Three grenades and a pistol were seized in a hand-held bag besides some documents. A number of citizens were slightly injured who happened to be in the scene when the incident took place. They were also transported to the hospital and security authorities are still conducting investigations to uncover the identity of the perpetrator and his motives,” the source added.

Yemen Times contacted Military Intelligence Leadership of the Ministry of Defense asking for further clarification concerning the incident.

A source said the attack was against a Ministry of Defense's car carrying military personnel but did not reveal the people in the targeted identity.

“It is untrue that Brig. Ali al-Saiyani, Director of Military intelligence was targeted. This rumor was circulated because his motorcade passed in the opposite direction.”

On the other hand Akhbar al-Yaum newspaper mentioned in its Tuesday's issue, April 26 that security authorities identified the perpetrator by means of his ID documents.

“He is thought to be linked to Kata'ib Badr militias, a division of the so-called 'Believing Youth Organization' -supporters of Badr al-Din al-Houthi,” the newspaper said.

The newspaper alluded that the attacker is probably linked to Badr Scientific Center which is sponsored by Islamic Zaidi cleric Dr. Al-Murtadha Zaid al-Muhatwari. The members of the Center took part in the rebellion led by Husseein Badr al-Din al-Houthi and later by his father, according to the newspaper.

Yemen Times contacted Dr. Al0-Muhatwari who was surprised at “the unprecedented lies.”

He said, “I am a Muslim man with a moderate and tolerant thought. I am not biased towards violence.”

He wondered, “Does this mean that I am going to be assassinated? What should I do and what is my charge to face such an ordeal. Everything the State dictates to me I do including the change to religious address. I have obeyed all their commands to the letter. What else do they want?”

He described it as a stigma on the securitry apparatus to allow such slander.

“I don't know the person who detonated the grenade and he is not one of my disciples.

“We are leading a life worse than animals and yet they envy us. He who circulates rumors against us saying we are against the State is malignant, disordered, and immoral,” he concluded.

Eyewitnesses who were present at the scene told the Yemen Times that the killed man, who was charged of hurling the grenade, was just an unlucky passer-by. He was killed amidst indiscriminate shooting when the sentries exchanged fire with the attackers who escaped on a fast car.