2013 Sana'a attack

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2013 Sana'a attack
Part of Al-Qaeda insurgency in Yemen
Location Sana'a, Yemen
Date 5 December 2013
Target Yemeni Defense Ministry
Attack type
Suicide car bombing
Deaths 56[1]
Non-fatal injuries
Suspected perpetrators
Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula

The 2013 Sana'a attack occurred on 5 December 2013 when a series of bomb and gun attacks killed at least 56 people and wounded 162 at the Yemeni Defense Ministry in Sana'a, Yemen.[2][3] Yemeni military investigators say 12 militants, mostly Saudi nationals, were responsible for the attack [4]


Gunmen killed four guards surrounding the ministry compound.[5] After the gate was open, a suicide bomber drove an explosive-laden car into the western entrance of the Defense Ministry complex. The suicide car bombing was followed by a coordinated attack by militants in another car. The gunmen entered the Al-Oradi Hospital inside the compound, shooting at those inside and killing many.[5] At least six of the casualties were doctors and four were patients from a hospital within the complex. Another coordinated attack and gunfight outside the complex late afternoon was reported to have taken place.[6]


On 5 December, Ansar al-Sharia, a militant group linked to al-Qaeda has claimed responsibility for the attack.[7][8]


The attacks claimed 56 lives and caused more than 200 injuries. Foreign medical workers were among the casualties.[1] Among those who were killed were seven Filipino medical workers (including one doctor),[9][10] two German aid workers, two Vietnamese doctors and one Indian nurse. Officials have said that all 12 militants which including Saudi Arabians were killed.[1]

Nationality Deaths
 Yemen 20+[11]
 Philippines 7[9]
 Germany 2[1]
 Vietnam 2[1]
 India 1[1]


On 6 December, the U.S. military has increased its regional alert status following deadly, coordinated strikes on Yemen’s defense ministry that killed 57 and wounded 167 people on Thursday, a senior U.S. defense official said on Friday. “The United States military is fully prepared to support our Yemeni partners in the wake of this incident,” the official told Reuters on condition of anonymity, and without offering further details.[7]

The Philippines has banned deployment of migrant workers to Yemen in response to the attack which saw the deaths of seven Filipinos. The Philippine government will pay the expense of Filipinos who wish to return to the Philippines.[9]

Germany temporarily reduced its staff at its embassy in Sana'a and called for its aid workers in Yemen to leave the country "as quickly as possible",.[12]

After footage of the attack was aired on Yemeni television, showing an attack on a hospital within the ministry compound and the killing of medical personal and patients, the head of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula released a video message apologizing. Qassim al-Raimi claimed that the team of attackers were directed not to assault the hospital in the attack, but that one had gone ahead and done so.[13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Ahmed Al-Haj (2013-12-05). "AP NewsBreak: Yemen says Saudis behind attack | UTSanDiego.com". Web.utsandiego.com. Retrieved 2013-12-11. 
  2. ^ "Deadly attacks hit Yemen defence ministry in Sanaa". BBC News. 5 December 2013. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 52 people die in Yemen attack 
  3. ^ "Militants attack hospital at Yemen's Defense Ministry". CNN. December 5, 2013. Retrieved 2013-12-06. 
  4. ^ "Saudi nationals responsible for brazen attack in Yemen that killed 56, wounded 215". New York: Nydailynews.com. 2013-12-06. Retrieved 7 December 2013. 
  5. ^ a b "Yemen picks up the pieces after attack on Defense Ministry". Yementimes.com. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  6. ^ "2 Pinoy doctors among 25 reported killed in latest Yemen violence | Pinoy Abroad | GMA News Online". Gmanetwork.com. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  7. ^ a b "U.S. Army on alert after Qaeda strikes in Yemen". English.alarabiya.net. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  8. ^ "Al Qaeda-Linked Group Claims Responsibility For Yemen Ministry Attack - Headline - ARISE NEWS - London, New York, Johannesburg - Every Culture, Every Angle". Arise.tv. 2013-12-06. Retrieved 2013-12-11. 
  9. ^ a b c "Philippines Workers Banned From Yemen After Al Qaeda Attack Kills Over 50". Huffingtonpost.com. 2013-12-09. Retrieved 2013-12-11. 
  10. ^ Reijet Jarreau Lazaro Pelea; Tridel Technologies Inc. (2013-12-05). "7 Filipinos dead in Yemen attack | Manila Bulletin | Latest Breaking News | News Philippines". Mb.com.ph. Retrieved 2013-12-11. 
  11. ^ "20 Yemenis Killed in an Attack on the Defense Ministry, December 5, 2013". Aljazeerah.info. Retrieved 2013-12-11. 
  12. ^ "Germany reduces Yemen-based staff after deadly attack". En.alalam.ir. 2013-12-06. Retrieved 2013-12-11. 
  13. ^ "Al Qaeda: We're sorry about Yemen hospital attack". CNN. 2013-12-22. Retrieved 2014-01-22. 

Coordinates: 15°20′57″N 44°12′47″E / 15.3491°N 44.2131°E / 15.3491; 44.2131