Wed Dec 9, 2015 03:11PM
This file photo shows a church atop a hill in the Tawahi district, Yemen’s southern port city of Aden. (AFP photo)
This file photo shows a church atop a hill in the Tawahi district, Yemen’s southern port city of Aden. (AFP photo)

Unidentified attackers have exploded a Catholic church in Yemen's southern port city of Aden, amid the ongoing Saudi military aggression against the impoverished Arab country.

According to residents, the abandoned church, which is located in the embattled city’s Mualla District, was blown up on Wednesday by gunmen who "were probably extremists."

"We heard a strong explosion which sent a big plume of smoke into the air and afterward saw that the building was completely destroyed," one resident said.

Constructed during the British colonial era in the 1960s, the Immaculate Conception Church was already severely damaged in a Saudi airstrike in May.

Yemen has been under military attacks by Saudi Arabia since late March. The Saudi strikes were launched to supposedly undermine the Houthi Ansarullah movement and bring the fugitive former president, Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, back to power.

Earlier this week, Mohammed Abdulsalam, the spokesman for Ansarullah, lashed out at Riyadh over sponsoring and supporting terrorist groups wreaking havoc in the southern parts of Yemen as the governor of Aden Province was killed after his convoy was hit by a car bomb attack.

Yemeni security officials said the December 6 incident took place when Jaafar Mohammed Saad was travelling with his entourage in the Tawahi district of Aden City. The Daesh Takfiri terrorist group claimed responsibility for the attack.

Yemenis gather around the wreckage of a car at the site of a blast that hit the convoy of the governor of Aden, Jaafar Mohammed Saad, in the Tawahi neighborhood of the port city of Aden, on December 6, 2015. (AFP photo)

Abdulsalam warned about the spread of terrorism and growth of Saudi-backed Takfiri militant outfits in Yemen’s southern provinces, while criticizing Saudi aerial attacks together with assaults by al-Qaeda- and Daesh-affiliated terrorists for undermining the relative calm in Yemen's northern provinces.

More than 7,500 people have been killed and over 14,000 others injured in the Saudi attacks since March 26. The strikes have also taken a heavy toll on the impoverished country’s facilities and infrastructure, destroying many hospitals, schools and factories.

There have been increased warnings that the aggression could strengthen the grip of terror groups across Yemen. Ansarullah revolutionaries have repeatedly declared the fight against extremism and terrorism as one of their main objectives.