Fortunately, he was the only one killed in the attack, as police foiled a second attack at another attraction.
SKY News (h/t Maria J) The man, who was wearing a belt of explosives, detonated his charge near the Riadh Palm Hotel in Sousse – moments before security forces foiled a second similar attack elsewhere. Witnesses told Tunisian media that the man appeared to be about to enter the hotel when the bomb detonated.
It is believed to be the first suicide bombing ever to take place in the country. A would-be suicide bomber who tried to blow himself up at the tomb of former President Habib Bourguiba in the southern city of Monastir was captured by police. “An attempted attack targeting the compound of the Bourguiba mausoleum was foiled … and a young man carrying explosives was arrested,” said ministry spokesman Mohamed Ali Laroui.
Both men appeared to belong to a Muslim extremist group, he added.
The suicide bomber in Sousse, which is situated 90 miles south of the capital Tunis, was the only person killed in the attack, the interior ministry said. There were no immediate reports of any other casualties. Sousse has long been a major destination for European tourism, a sector that is now recovering from a catastrophic drop following the country’s 2011 revolution which kick-started the Arab Spring.
The country has been battling unrest since the overthrow of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali’s secular dictatorship, and has seen the rise of a hardline Islamist movement that has armed itself and carried out attacks.
Earlier this year, Tunisia’s Islamist government began a crackdown on Ansar al Sharia, one of the most radical groups to emerge since the uprising. The group’s leader is a former al Qaeda veteran who once fought in Afghanistan. Nine police officers were killed in clashes with militants earlier this month.