Fighters loyal to the government gather at the site of Monday’s suicide car bombing in Yemen’s southern city of Aden. (Wael Qubady / AP)

An army training camp in Yemen was hit by a suicide car bombing on Monday that killed 54 people. According to Al-Jazeera, Islamic State claimed responsibility for the “martyrdom operation.” The attack—which targeted new recruits signing up to fight Shiite Houthi rebels in north Yemen, near the Saudi Arabian border—was another tragic incident in the civil war that has plagued the country since 2015.

Al Jazeera reports

“It’s a massacre. This is the highest death toll in any attack that happened in Aden before,” Hakim Almasmari, editor-in-chief of Yemen Post newspaper, told Al Jazeera.

The port city, the temporary base of Yemen’s Arab Gulf-backed government, has seen a wave of bombings and shootings targeting officials and security forces.

Yemeni authorities have trained hundreds of soldiers in Aden over the past two months as part of operations to retake neighbouring southern provinces from fighters.

Earlier this month, Yemen government forces entered Abyan’s provincial capital Zinjibar.

Troops retook other towns across Abyan but have been met by fierce resistance in a key al-Qaeda stronghold, Al-Mahfid, a town which lies further east, security sources said.

Since the war started last year, various death tolls have been reported. According to Al-Jazeera, 6,600 people have been killed in Yemen, the majority of them civilians. According to The New York Times, the number of people killed so far is about 9,000, including 3,218 civilians.

The violence has led to a humanitarian crisis in Yemen. According to the United Nations, over 600 health facilities have been forced to close and 80 percent of the population needs aid.

— Posted by Donald Kaufman

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