UPDATE: 5:31 a.m. EST -- The Islamic State group, also known as ISIS, claimed responsibility for the death of Gaafar Mohamed Saad, governor of Aden, Yemen, Agence France-Presse reported, citing a statement posted online by the group.

Saad, who reportedly played a key role in wresting control of the city back from Shia Houthi rebels, was appointed governor in October, the BBC reported. The rebels, believed to be backed by Iran, have taken control of most of the country, and airstrikes led by Saudi Arabia have sought to help pro-government forces regain power.

ISIS reportedly became active in November and has carried out several attacks since then in the country. And the latest attack comes a day after a United Nations envoy met with President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi in Aden in a bid to halt the months-long civil war.

Original story:

Gaafar Mohamed Saad, governor of the port city of Aden in Yemen, has died in an explosion, according to reports Sunday. The blast also claimed the lives of six of his bodyguards, the Associated Press reported.

Saad was traveling to his office when the explosion hit his convoy in the city's Rimbaud neighborhood, AP reported, citing unidentified officials. 

Yemen has witnessed an ongoing conflict between Shiite Houthi rebels and supporters of the now-exiled government led by Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi.

The strife has escalated since the start of airstrikes led by Saudi Arabia, which helped pro-government forces drive the rebels out of Aden earlier this year.