Politicians, scholars and local organisations condemned Monday's (May 21st) suicide bombing in Sanaa's Sabeen Square that left 96 Yemeni soldiers dead and around 300 injured.
Yemen's central security forces had been rehearsing for a military parade to mark the May 22nd anniversary of Yemen's unification when the bomber struck.
In a statement, al-Qaeda claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it targeted Yemen's defence minister, and threatened more attacks.
Both the defence minister, Mohammed Nasser Ahmed, and the military's chief of staff, Maj. Gen. Ahmed Ali al-Ashwal, were present at the rehearsal, but neither was hurt.
In an address to Yemenis Monday, President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi vowed to continue the war on terror until terrorism has been eradicated and completely destroyed, "whatever the sacrifices."
Yemen's Interior Ministry announced it has formed a committee to investigate the terrorist attack.
"This terrorist act will only increase the resolve of the security and armed forces to unabatedly fight terrorist elements until terrorism is uprooted," the ministry statement read. "Those behind this heinous massacre will not go unpunished."
A few hours after the bombing, President Hadi appointed new commanders to the central security forces, Yemen's police rescue division and the country's National Security Bureau.
Republican Guard forces also thwarted two other militants seeking to carry out further violence against military parade units.
Almotamar.net, the official website of the General People's Congress (GPC), reported that two other militants dressed in central security forces uniforms and wearing explosive belts were arrested in an apparent plan to carry further attacks on the heels of the first bombing.
Hospitals in Sanaa declared a state of emergency and the National Blood Transfusion and Research Centre urged citizens with Rh-negative blood types to swiftly donate blood to save the wounded.
Yemen's government on Monday pledged it will not hesitate to take all measures necessary to uproot extremism in all its forms and manifestations, and provide the military and security forces with the support they need to perform their duties reinforcing security and stability and eliminating terrorism.
The government urged scholars, preachers and counsellors to educate the public about the seriousness of such terrorist acts and to clarify the facts of Islam, which refutes extremism and terrorism and forbids taking innocent lives.
"We affirm that the war on terrorism and on al-Qaeda, the principal terrorist threat, will continue, and these acts, as painful as they are, will only motivate us to eradicate al-Qaeda, the enemy of not only [Yemenis] but all of humanity," said Abdo al-Janadi, deputy information minister and GPC spokesperson.
Al-Janadi said Yemen will celebrate unification as scheduled but at a different location.
"Such heinousness exposes the hideousness of those who call themselves human beings and who kill people for the sake of killing and savour people's blood and souls," he told Al-Shorfa.
Al-Janadi called on Yemenis to help annihilate this phenomenon, and lauded the victories achieved by the army in its campaign to remove al-Qaeda from Abyan province.
Abdu al-Odaini, spokesman for the Joint Meeting Parties (JMP), told Al-Shorfa the bombing deserves condemnation and denunciation, and called on Yemenis to stand together to face the challenge of the terror perpetrated by al-Qaeda.
"Yemen is going through a historical stage and citizens must stand as one and work collectively to defeat terrorism and proceed to build a modern civil state free of terrorism," he said.
Religious scholar Hassan al-Sheikh, deputy endowments minister and a member of the Yemen Scholars Association, said all society must condemn this crime.
Whether committed by al-Qaeda or another group, it is "a crime against humanity as a whole [... and] a terrorist act of the first order because it was committed against soldiers rehearsing for a ceremonial event, not on the front lines," al-Sheikh said.
"Suicide bombers are stripped of human and moral values, and have also abandoned religious teachings Islam exhorts them to follow, being the religion of tolerance," he said.
Civil society organisations and the National Council for Peaceful Revolution Forces also condemned the attack, demanding the perpetrators be uncovered and calling on the armed forces to continue their campaign in Abyan.