Yemen looks for al Qaeda activists behind tourist site bombing
Yemeni police were hunting on Tuesday the masterminds of a suicide car bombing which killed seven Spanish tourists and two Yemeni drivers, after officials said it was the work of Al-Qaeda. Spain was set to dispatch a plane with senior officials to collect the remains of the dead later Tuesday.
Spanish judicial authorities also announced they would "open terrorism proceedings" after receiving a briefing from the justice and foreign ministries. "Preliminary information indicates that the Al-Qaeda organisation is behind the cowardly attack," a Yemeni interior ministry official told the state Saba news agency on Monday.
A suicide bomber rammed a car packed with explosives into the tourists' convoy as they were ending a tour of a temple in Marib.
"Security agencies will not relent in tracking down all the terrorist elements who stand behind this terrorist criminal act and putting them on trial so they receive a deterrent punishment," the interior ministry said.
Yemeni security officials had been warned about a possible al-Qaeda attack, the AP reported on Tuesday. A security official was quoted as saying al-Qaeda had warned recently it would carry out attacks against Yemeni oil facilities, government institutions and foreign embassies. Heightened security measures had been taken at those facilities, said the official. "What happened yesterday was unexpected," the official said. "They managed to mislead us."