(AP) SAN`A, Yemen – Two explosions rocked a northern Yemen town in the past 24 hours, killing nine people, including two men carrying bombs that detonated, security officials said Thursday.
The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said both explosions occurred in the northern town of Sa’dah, 125 miles northwest of San`a, where government troops have been fighting a Shiite cleric and his supporters.
On Thursday, a Yemeni man carrying an explosive device in a local market was killed when the bomb detonated, the officials said, adding six bystanders were injured.
A day earlier, a similar explosion killed eight people, including a man carrying the bomb, and injured dozens, the officials said.
The officials provided no further details, except to say investigations were continuing.
It was unclear if the explosions were related to a two-month rebellion against government forces by Shiite cleric Hussein Badr Eddin al-Hawthi, who is accused of sedition, attacking government buildings and security forces, forming an illegal armed group and inciting people not to pay taxes.
A $55,000 bounty has been offered for his capture. More than 600 soldiers and rebels have died in the clashes.
Al-Hawthi’s supporters maintain the Yemeni government wants to silence him because he is outspoken against corruption and the government’s pro-American policies.
Yemen, a poor, tribal country at the southern tip of the Arabian Peninsula, is awash with weapons, with authorities estimating that there are 60 million firearms, or three for each citizen.