A Saudi-led coalition air strike on rebels in a residential area of the Yemeni capital on Tuesday killed at least 21 people including civilians, witnesses and medics said.
Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi sits in a Saudi aircraft en route to the city of Aden on September 22.
He reminded all parties of their obligation to “take all feasible precautions to avoid loss of civilian life and damage to civilian objects”.
He fled Aden in late March as Houthi rebels advanced on the city, triggering air strikes by a Saudi-led coalition.
Senior Yemeni sources revealed last month that Aden would see the return of senior government officials, including the head of state and prime minister, as well as military officers, before the Eid ul-Adha holiday.
A former army general and vice president, Hadi assumed office in 2012 under a Gulf-brokered transition plan following “Arab Spring” protests which ended over three decades of rule by his predecessor, Ali Abdullah Saleh.
“Aden will be the key to Yemen’s salvation”, Hadi said in July during a televised address marking the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.
Since then, the Houthis have lost five southern provinces to loyalists, who are now waging a major offensive in oil-rich Marib province east of the capital.
But the Iranian-backed rebels, who still control much of northern and central Yemen, appear to have slowed the loyalist advance.
The death toll was likely to rise because some people were missing, another medical source said, as rescuers combed the rubble.
A security vacuum in Aden and much of Yemen’s south, which were won back from the Houthis in July, may yet delay the regrouping of the Yemeni state there as armed gangs and al Qaeda militants have stepped up their presence.
Over 70 people, including six children, were also killed earlier in the day when Saudi warplanes engaged in massive attacks on capital Sana’a and provinces of Hajjah in the west, Sa’ada in the northwest, and Ibb in the southwestern part of the country.
Al Qaida said in June that its leader in Yemen, Nasir al-Wuhayshi, had been killed by a USA drone.