10/27/2015, 00.00
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Jihadis to impose gender segregation and prayers at Aden university

Islamic State gunmen hand out leaflets in at least three departments of the University of Aden, calling for music ban. They set a Thursday deadline or they would carry out car bomb and petrol bomb attacks. The leaflets’ authenticity could not however be determined.

Sana'a (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Radical Islamist gunmen have threatened to use force against university students in Yemen's southern city of Aden if they do not observe segregation of the sexes on campus, witnesses said.

Citing students, Middle East Online reported that armed militants handed out leaflets containing threats and signed by the Islamic State (IS) group in at least three departments of University of Aden.

The authenticity of the leaflets signed by the IS Aden and Abyan branch could not be immediately verified.

In addition to gender segregation, the leaflets also banned music and demanded that students perform collective prayers on campus.

They set a Thursday deadline for the demands to be met. Otherwise, they threatened to carry out car bomb and petrol bomb attacks.

Southern fighters allied with President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi and supported by Saudi-led coalition forces managed in July to push pro-Iranian Shia Houthi rebels out of the port city of Aden.

Islamist militants, including Al-Qaeda and IS, appeared to have gained ground in Yemen's second city, where jihadists are now visibly present.

Since the war broke out, some 5,000 people, including 2,300 civilians, have been killed. Various reports indicate that more than 21 million Yemenis, 80 per cent of the population, are in desperate need of food and medical aid. Almost 1.5 million people are internally displaced.

Al-Qaeda, active across several parts of Yemen, has exploited the collapse of central authority during a 2011 uprising that ousted veteran president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

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