Brigadier General Abdel Latif el Sayed survived the assassination attempt but at least four people were killed by the car bomb.

The explosion damaged at least four vehicles of El Sayed’s convoy.
The explosion damaged at least four vehicles of El Sayed’s convoy. (Reuters)

At least four people have been killed and injured eight people, including a senior security official, by a car bomb in war-torn Yemen. 

The explosion took place in the city of Zinjibar and targeted the convoy of Abdel Latif el Sayed, commander of the so-called Security Belt force in the southern province of Abyan, officials said on Tuesday.

The explosion damaged at least four vehicles of El Sayed’s convoy, according to security officials. 

Images from the scene showed at least one white Toyota pick-up truck burnt.

Following the explosion, El Sayed spoke to local media and said he was slightly wounded in what he called a “terrorist attack.” 

No one immediately claimed responsibility.

READ MORE: Why tensions are escalating between Yemen’s Houthis and the UAE

UAE backs Security Belt militia

The Security Belt is a militia, trained and funded by the United Arab Emirates and loyal to the secessionist Southern Transitional Council.

El Sayed is the commander in Abyan of the Security Belt, the military forces of the separatist Southern Transitional Council (STC) which is backed by the United Arab Emirates.

The STC is part of a military coalition led by Saudi Arabia and which includes the UAE that intervened in Yemen in March 2015 after the Iran-aligned Houthi movement ousted the government from the capital, Sanaa.

But STC has vied with the internationally recognised government for control of Aden and Yemen's wider south.

Last October, Aden's governor, who is an STC member, survived a car bomb in the port city that killed six people.

Such blasts are common in war-torn Yemen, where fighting between government forces and Houthi rebels have raged for over seven years. 

The Al Qaeda and Daesh groups are also active in several areas.

READ MORE: Explained: The implications of UN's recognition of Houthis as terrorists

Source: TRTWorld and agencies