SANA, Yemen – The inauguration of Yemen’s president was barely over Saturday when a car bomb exploded at a presidential palace, killing at least 25 people and highlighting the dangers the new leader faces in trying to bring stability to the Arabian Peninsula.
The brazen attack was a taunting welcome to President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi, who was sworn in to end the 33-year despotic rule of Ali Abdullah Saleh.
The country’s rising chaos took another twist when Saleh, who had been undergoing medical treatment in the U.S., returned home before Hadi addressed the nation. Saleh’s reappearance and the palace bloodshed indicated that the tribal and political unrest that has gripped Yemen for more than a year will probably not be calmed by the election of a new president.
No one claimed immediate responsibility for the blast, but a security official said it bore the imprints of al-Qaida.
Sana has been a Washington ally against terrorism but has failed to rout Islamic militants from tribal lands and mountain redoubts.