Gulf of Aden Security Review - September 18, 2013

Yemen: U.S. ambassador criticizes Yemen’s economic progress; security forces fire on demonstrators in Lahij; security forces disperse demonstrators in Aden; Southern Movement militants attack security forces in Aden

Horn of Africa: Somalis march in support of government and “New Deal” in Mogadishu; Speaker of Parliament discusses possible merger between Bay and Bakool regions; gunmen assassinate Somali elder; suspected al Shabaab militants attack Somali National Army; Ugandan President urges better troop behavior  

Yemen Security Brief

  • U.S. Ambassador Gerald Feierstein reportedly said during a press conference that the Yemeni government has not achieved any economic successes similar to its political successes and has failed to encourage investment or develop its energy sector. Feierstein will be ending his tenure as ambassador to Yemen in the next few days.[1]
  • Security forces opened fire on demonstrators who were blocking the border crossing in al Kirsh, Lahij governorate September 18. One of the shots hit a local school. Security forces also arrested a number of protesters.[2]
  • Security forces dispersed a demonstration and arrested seven protesters in Aden on September 18. The extremist wing of the Southern Movement had organized the protest to reject the results of the National Dialogue Conference (NDC). [3]
  • Southern Movement militants attacked security forces with live bullets and a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) in al Mualla, Aden governorate on September 18. The clash killed one person and wounded five soldiers.[4]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Hundreds of Somalis marched in support of the Somali Federal Government and the “New Deal for Somalia” in Mogadishu on September 17.[5]
  • Speaker of the Somali Federal Parliament Sheikh Osman Jawari discussed prospects of merging Bay and Bakool regions into a single administrative region with civil society groups, elders, intellectuals, and politicians from the regions on September 18.[6]
  • Unidentified gunmen killed a popular Somali elder and businessman, Farah Shidane, in Mogadishu on September 17. Shidane was among the elders who assisted in bringing Hassan Dahir Aweys, an al Shabaab leader, to the Somali government.[7]
  • Al Shabaab militants attacked a Somali National Army convoy and sparked a skirmish in the Lower Shabelle region on September 18. Casualties were reported but exact figures were not released.[8]
  • Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni urged Ugandan AMISOM soldiers destined for Somalia to serve as ambassadors of Uganda on September 18. The president’s remarks came days after Ugandan soldiers were suspended for alleged corrupt behavior in Somalia.[9]

[1] “American Ambassador in Yemen Launches Attack on the Government of Basindawa,” Barakish, September 18, 2013 [Arabic]. Available: http://wefaqpress.net/news_details.php?lang=arabic&sid=8560
[2] “Breaking: Clashes in Karash and Arrests and Gunfire at a School by Security Checkpoint,” Sada Aden, September 18, 2013 [Arabic]. Available: http://www.sadaaden.com/local/79-local/33390#.Ujm51KywWSo
[3] “BBC: Hirak Militants Cut Off Roads and Force Store Owners to Close Their Stores,” BBC Arabic, September 18, 2013 [Arabic]. Available: http://hunaaden.com/news/3452/
[4] “Breaking: Militants Attack Security Forces in al Mualla and News On Dead and Wounded and Storming of al ‘Arawad Square,” Huna Aden, September 18, 2013 [Arabic]. Available: http://hunaaden.com/news/3446/
[5] “Hundreds match in the streets of Mogadishu in support of Brussels conference,” Shabelle, September 17, 2013. Available: http://shabelle.net/?p=3969
[6] “Speaker holds closed door meeting with different civil groups from Bai and Bakool regions,” Shabelle, September 18, 2013. Available: http://shabelle.net/?p=4045
[7] “Famous Somali elder assassinated in Mogadishu,” Dalsan Radio, September 17, 2013. Available: http://dalsanradio.com/articles/1388/Famous-Somali-elder-assassinated-in-Mogadishu
[8] “Fighting between government forces and Alshabab in the lower Shabelle region,” Shabelle, September 18, 2013. Available: http://shabelle.net/?p=4042
[9] “Museveni Flags off New UPDF Contigent to Somalia,” Shabelle, September 18, 2013. Available: http://shabelle.net/?p=4016