Islamic State terrorists (Isis) have taken responsibility for the huge explosion that killed the governor of Yemen's southern Aden province and six of his bodyguards on Sunday.

In a statement released on social media,  Daesh (an Arabic acronym for Isis) said that Jaafar Mohammed Saad's convoy was passing through a western district of Aden when it was targeted by an Isis suicide bomber, who rammed his explosive-laden car into the convoy.

Initial reports had said that the Aden governor was killed after his car was targeted by a rocket-propelled grenade.

The Aden Governor was travelling to his office on Sunday morning when the explosion struck his convoy in the Rimbaud area of the southern port city, The Associated Press had reported.

The explosion also killed six bodyguards of the governor.

According to Reuters, Saad, was a general in the army of the former southern Yemen before the Marxist state merged with northern Yemen in 1990. He was appointed governor in October, mere a month before  President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi returned to Aden from Saudi Arabia.

Both al-Qaeda and Isis have exploited the chaos in Yemen to seize territory in the country's south and east.