Gulf of Aden Security Review - June 10, 2011

Yemen: Yemeni defense ministry identifies killed AQAP operatives; militants operate freely in Abyan, Shabwah, and Hadramawt governorates; suspected separatists attack checkpoint in Lahij; U.S. Secretary of State urges transition; two anti-government militants killed in Taiz

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab militants attack Mogadishu’s port; Somali-American charged with providing “financial support and personnel” to al Shabaab

Yemen Security Brief

  • The Yemeni Defense Ministry identified the names of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) operatives who had been killed. These names included Ammar al Waeli, Abu Ali al Harithi, and Abu Ayman al Masri.[1]
  • Abyan residents report that suspected al Qaeda militants operated in the open and had established checkpoints along the roads. Shabwah residents reported that militants had established checkpoints along the road to Hadramawt governorate and that militants control the towns of Rawdah and Hawta. Militants in Hadramawt governorate are also operating openly. Abyan, Shabwah, and Hadramawt governorates are known al Qaeda safe havens.[2]
  • Suspected separatists attacked a military checkpoint outside al Habilain in Lahij governorate. At least five soldiers and three rebels were killed.[3]
  • U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, “We continued to urge all sides to honor the ceasefire, and we support an immediate, orderly, and peaceful transition consistent with Yemen’s constitution. Violence is not the way forward, and Yemen’s instability is a challenge for us all. The Yemeni people need a government that addresses their needs and aspirations."[4]
  • Yemeni security forces killed two fighters from a local militia in Taiz, the “Eagles of Liberty.”[5]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Al Shabaab conducted a suicide attack on Mogadishu's port. One bomber detonated his suicide vest, killing an AMISOM peacekeeper and an old man and injuring three other people. AMISOM soldiers reportedly killed the other suicide bomber before detonation. A port official reported that "the attackers have climbed over the perimeter into the port and stealthily came to the fourth store where African Union troops have a base." Al Shabaab spokesman Ali Mohamed Rage said that al Shabaab claimed responsibility for the attack.[6]
  • Somali-American Ahmed Hussein Mahamud, who lives in Columbus, Ohio, was indicted for providing "financial support and personnel" to al Shabaab in at least two separate instances in 2009.[7]

[1] Jamal al Jaberi, "Yemen braces for rival demos," AFP, June 9, 2011. Available: http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20110610/wl_mideast_afp/yemenpoliticsunrest
Mohammed Ghobari and Mohammed Mukhashaf, "Yemen awaits possible Saleh return after surgery," Reuters, June 9, 2011. Available: http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/06/09/us-yemen-idUSTRE73L1PP20110609
"Three civilians dead in Yemen air raid," AFP, June 10, 2011. Available: http://gulftoday.ae/portal/c42f61e7-3c09-40b9-a184-647b6f90f407.aspx
[2] Ahmed al Haj and Hamza Hendawi, "Yemen's militants emboldened by nation's turmoil," AP, June 9, 2011. Available: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110609/ap_on_re_mi_ea/ml_yemen
[3] "Eight die as Yemeni troops fight southern rebels," Reuters, June 10, 2011. Available: http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/06/10/us-yemen-clashes-idUSTRE7591RU20110610
[4] "Press Availability in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates," State Department, June 9, 2011. Available: http://www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2011/06/165351.htm
[5] Jamal al Jaberi, "Yemen braces for rival demos," AFP, June 9, 2011. Available: http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20110610/wl_mideast_afp/yemenpoliticsunrest
[6] Abdi Hajji Hussein, "Suicide attacks on Mogadishu’s harbor leave four persons dead," All Headline News, June 9, 2011. Available: http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/90051039?Suicide%20attacks%20on%20Mogadishu%26%23146%3Bs%20harbor%20leave%20four%20dead
"AMISOM condemns suicide attacks on Mogadishu Sea Port," AMISOM, June 9, 2011. Available: http://www.amisom-au.org/read-71296_AMISOM-Press-Release-suicide-attack-seaport.pdf
[7] Carol Cratty, "Somali-American charged with aiding al-Shabaab terror group," CNN, June 9, 2011. Available: http://www.cnn.com/2011/CRIME/06/09/ohio.somalia.american.arrested/