A suspected Islamist militant was killed early on Saturday when a bomb he was trying to plant in the car of an intelligence officer in Sanaa exploded in his hands, security sources said.
No one else was hurt by the blast, which jolted some residents out of bed shortly after midnight. Local news websites published photos of the bloodied body of a young man they said was behind the attack.
A government source said the target of the attack was stationed at the Ministry of Higher Education. His predecessor had been shot dead in 2011.
Suspected al Qaeda militants have killed scores of Yemeni intelligence, army and police officers in recent months, often by rigging their cars with explosives or in drive-by shootings using motorbikes.
U.S.-allied Yemen is home to al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, one of the most active militant franchises of the network founded by Osama bin Laden.
The government of the impoverished Arab country is struggling to assert its authority following more than two years of political turmoil which began with protests that ousted veteran president Ali Abdullah Saleh.