Al-Qaeda reported behind mortar attack against US embassy in Yemen
(dpa) - An al-Qaeda cell was behind the last week's mortar attack against the US embassy in Sana'a, a state-run newspaper reported on Saturday.
"The al-Qaeda terror organisation was involved in the terrorist attack," the al-Thawra daily said, quoting an unnamed police source.
The source identified one member of the cell as Hamza al-Dhaiani, who allegedly launched three mortar rounds at the embassy on Tuesday. "He carried out the attack from a pick-up vehicle," the source said.
The shells apparently missed their target and struck the courtyard of a girls' public school adjacent to the embassy's compound in eastern Sana'a's Saawan neighbourhood.
"Police bodies are still pursuing the terrorist al-Dhaiani who carried out the attack backed by several other terrorists," the source added.
A Yemeni guard patrolling the back fence of the embassy was immediately killed and three colleagues injured. Thirteen female students from the nearby school were also injured in the attack.
Yemen, an impoverished Arab country, was also the scene of a suicide attack on the US destroyer USS Cole in 2000.
Al-Qaeda praised that attack, but did not directly claim responsibility. A similar attack targeted the French supertanker Limburg in 2002.
After the September 11, 2001 attacks on the US, Yemen allied itself with the US-led "war on terror," pursued suspected members of al-Qaeda and put scores of them on trial.
On November 12, a Yemeni state security court in Sana'a convcted a Yemeni man of shooting at the US embassy in Sana'a last year, and sentenced him to five years in prison.