Gulf of Aden Security Review

A regularly updated review of both Yemen and the Horn of Africa covering topics related to security, governance, and militant activity.{{authorBox.message}}

Loading...

Loading...

Yemen: Saudi-led coalition claims to intercept al Houthi explosive-laden drones targeting Saudi Arabia; Saudi-led coalition reportedly launches airstrikes in al Houthi–held Sana’a; southern forces shell al Houthi positions in Dhaleh governorate

Horn of Africa: AFRICOM conducts airstrike on al Shabaab in Lower Shabelle region; al Shabaab attacks bus in Wajir County; al Shabaab gains territorial control in Galmudug State

Yemen Security Brief:

Saudi-led coalition forces claimed to intercept three al Houthi explosive-laden drones targeting Saudi Arabia on January 15. The al Houthi militants allegedly launched the drones from western Yemen’s al Hudaydah governorate.[i]

Saudi-led coalition forces launched airstrikes targeting an airport in the al Houthi–controlled Yemeni capital, Sana’a, on January 14, according to the al Houthi movement.[ii]

Southern forces shelled al Houthi positions in the Hajjar area of southern Yemen’s Dhaleh governorate on January 13. Southern forces claimed thwarting an al Houthi attack near Dhaleh governorate’s Qataba district on January 12.[iii]

Horn of Africa Security Brief:

US Africa Command (AFRICOM) conducted an airstrike targeting al Shabaab in Bulo Fulay village in southern Somalia’s Lower Shabelle region on January 13. The airstrike killed one al Shabaab militant and destroyed an al Shabaab compound.[iv]

Al Shabaab militants attacked a commercial bus in Kenya’s Wajir County near the Kenyan-Somali border on January 13. Al Shabaab militants ambushed a Kenyan police convoy in Wajir County in mid-December.[v]

Al Shabaab militants took control of territory near Dhusamareb, the capital of central Somalia’s Galmudug State capital, on January 14.[vi]


[i] “Saudi-led coalition in Yemen says it intercepted 3 Houthi drones,” Reuters, January 15, 2021, https://www.reuters.com/article/saudi-yemen-security/saudi-led-coalition-in-yemen-says-it-intercepted-3-houthi-drones-idUSS8N2EU042.

[ii] “Al Houthi group accuses the coalition of launching a series of raids on Sana’a and separate areas,” al Jazeera, January 14, 2021, https://www.aljazeera.net/news/politics/2021/1/14/%d8%a7%d9%84%d9%8a%d9%85%d9%86-%d8%ac%d9%85%d8%a7%d8%b9%d8%a9-%d8%a7%d9%84%d8%ad%d9%88%d8%ab%d9%8a-%d8%aa%d8%aa%d9%87%d9%85-%d8%a7%d9%84%d8%aa%d8%ad%d8%a7%d9%84%d9%81; and “Coalition warplanes bomb al Daylami Airbase in Sana’a,” Hadramawt, January 14, 2021, https://www.7adramout.net/4MAY/7560312/%D8%B7%D9%8A%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AA%D8%AD%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%81-%D9%8A%D9%82%D8%B5%D9%81-%D9%82%D8%A7%D8%B9%D8%AF%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AF%D9%8A%D9%84%D9%85%D9%8A-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AC%D9%88%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D8%A8%D8%B5%D9%86%D8%B9%D8%A7%D8%A1.html.

[iii] “Southern forces break Houthi attacks from two axes in Dhaleh,” Hadramawt, January 14, 2021, https://www.7adramout.net/4MAY/7560282/%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%82%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AC%D9%86%D9%88%D8%A8%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D8%AA%D9%83%D8%B3%D8%B1-%D9%87%D8%AC%D9%85%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%AD%D9%88%D8%AB%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D9%85%D9%86-%D9%85%D8%AD%D9%88%D8%B1%D9%8A%D9%86-%D8%B4%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%84-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B6%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B9.html; and Rahma Bayrakdar and Jessica Kocan, “Gulf of Aden Security Review – January 13, 2021,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, January 13, 2021, https://www.criticalthreats.org/briefs/gulf-of-aden-security-review/gulf-of-aden-security-review-january-13-2021.

[iv] “U.S. Africa Command forces conduct strike on al-Shabaab compound,” US Africa Command, January 13, 2021, https://www.africom.mil/pressrelease/33405/us-africa-command-forces-conduct-strike-on-al-shabaab-compound.

[v] “Kenyan police pursue al-Shabab after bus attack in border region,” Hiiraan, January 14, 2021, https://www.hiiraan.com/news4/2021/Jan/181349/kenyan_police_pursue_al_shabab_after_bus_attack_in_border_region.aspx; “Al Shabaab militants rob bus crew, passengers in Wajir attack,” Hiiraan, January 15, 2021, https://www.hiiraan.com/news4/2021/Jan/181359/al_shabaab_militants_rob_bus_crew_passengers_in_wajir_attack.aspx; and Jessica Kocan and Hannah Kuperman, “Gulf of Aden Security Review – December 18, 2020,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, December 18, 2020, https://www.criticalthreats.org/briefs/gulf-of-aden-security-review/gulf-of-aden-security-review-december-18-2020.

[vi] “Al Shabaab operates in South Mudug and Galgadud,” Horseed Media, January 15, 2021, https://horseedmedia.net/2021/01/15/al-shabaab-oo-dhaq-dhaqaaq-ka-wada-koonfurta-mudug-iyo-galgaduud/.

View Citations

Yemen: AQAP releases video featuring AQAP emir; Saudi military committee moves from Abyan governorate to Aden; southern forces thwart al Houthi attack in Dhaleh governorate

Horn of Africa: Puntland State forces arrest 25 suspected al Shabaab and Islamic State militants; SNA attacks al Shabaab bases in Gedo region; suspected al Shabaab militants target telecommunications mast in Mandera County

 Yemen Security Brief:

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) released a religious lecture video on January 8. The video featured AQAP emir Khaled Batarfi. AQAP ceased releasing videos belonging to this lecture series in May 2020 after a US airstrike killed an AQAP media official.[i]

A Saudi military committee moved from Shaqra town in southern Yemen’s Abyan governorate to Yemen’s de facto capital Aden on January 12. Forces aligned with the internationally recognized Yemeni government and the Transitional Political Council of the South completed their military withdrawals from Abyan in mid-December as part of the power-sharing Riyadh Agreement. The Saudi committee arrived in Abyan in early December to oversee the implementation of the agreement’s military stipulations.[ii]

Southern forces claimed to thwart an al Houthi attack near Qataba district in southern Yemen’s Dhaleh governorate on January 12.[iii]

Horn of Africa Security Brief:

Puntland State forces arrested 25 suspected al Shabaab and Islamic State militants in Boosaaso town in northern Somalia’s Bari region on January 11. Puntland State Coast Guard forces claimed to target al Shabaab militants in Puntland State’s al Madow mountains in mid-December.[iv]

The Somali National Army (SNA) attacked al Shabaab bases in Bardhere town in southern Somalia’s Gedo region on January 13. The SNA killed eight al Shabaab militants in Bardhere on January 12.[v]

Suspected al Shabaab militants attacked a telecommunications mast in northeastern Kenya’s Mandera County on January 13. Al Shabaab militants attacked a telecommunications mast in Mandera County in mid-December.[vi]


[i] Elisabeth Kendall, Twitter, January 9, 2021 https://twitter.com/Dr_E_Kendall/status/1347893736022417408; and Jessica Kocan, “Yemen File: Al Houthi offensive escalates violence in central Yemen,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, October 14, 2020, https://www.criticalthreats.org/briefs/yemen-file/yemen-file-al-houthi-offensive-escalates-violence-in-central-yemen.

[ii] “The Saudi military committee permanently leaves Abyan,” Al Mashhad al Yemeni, January 13, 2021, https://www.almashhad-alyemeni.com/191273; “Saudi military committee leaves Abyan,” Al Alam, January 13, 2021, https://www.alalamtv.net/news/5386376; and Jessica Kocan and Hannah Kuperman, “Gulf of Aden Security Review – December 18, 2020,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, December 18, 2020, https://www.criticalthreats.org/briefs/gulf-of-aden-security-review/gulf-of-aden-security-review-december-18-2020

[iii] “Southern forces foil al Houthi attack northwest of Dhaleh’s frontlines,” Hadramawt, January 13, 2021, https://www.7adramout.net/almandebnews/7559293/%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%82%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AC%D9%86%D9%88%D8%A8%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D8%AA%D9%81%D8%B4%D9%84-%D9%87%D8%AC%D9%88%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%8B-%D9%84%D9%84%D9%85%D9%84%D9%8A%D8%B4%D9%8A%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AD%D9%88%D8%AB%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A5%D8%B1%D9%87%D8%A7%D8%A8%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D8%B4%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%84-%D8%BA%D8%B1%D8%A8-%D8%AC%D8%A8%D9%87%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B6%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B9.html; and “Houthis killed and wounded in intense artillery shelling by the army west of Qataba in Dhaleh,” Aden al Ghad, January 13, 2021, https://www.adengd.net/news/518913/.

[iv] “Puntland forces nab 25 Al-Shabaab, ISIS suspects in Bosaso,” Goobjoog News, January 12, 2021, http://goobjoog.com/english/puntland-forces-nab-25-al-shabaab-isis-suspects-in-bosaso/; and Jessica Kocan and Hannah Kuperman, “Gulf of Aden Security Review – December 14, 2020,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, December 14, 2020, https://www.criticalthreats.org/briefs/gulf-of-aden-security-review/gulf-of-aden-security-review-december-14-2020.

[v] Ardaan Yare, “Al-Shabaab blasts military commander and casualties,” Mareeg News, January 13, 2021, https://mareeg.com/al-shabaab-oo-qarax-la-beegsaday-taliye-ciidan-iyo-khasaaro-ka-dhashay/; and “Somalia army kills 8 militants in southern region,” Radio Shabelle, January 13, 2021, https://www.radioshabelle.com/somalia-army-kills-8-militants-in-southern-region/.

[vi] “Suspected al Shabaab militants bomb telco mast,” Hiiraan, January 13, 2021, http://www.hiiraan.com/news4/2021/Jan/181344/suspected_al_shabaab_militants_bomb_telco_mast.aspx; and Jessica Kocan and Hannah Kuperman, “Gulf of Aden Security Review – December 18, 2020,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, December 18, 2020, https://www.criticalthreats.org/briefs/gulf-of-aden-security-review/gulf-of-aden-security-review-december-18-2020.

 

View Citations

Yemen: Trump administration to designate al Houthis foreign terrorist organization; al Houthis attack antial Houthi forces in Ma’rib governorate

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab clashes with SNA and AMISOM forces in Hiraan region; suspected al Shabaab militants detonate IED targeting Kenyan forces along Kenyan-Somali border; al Shabaab ambushes SNA military base in Middle Shabelle region

Yemen Security Brief:

US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo said on January 10 the outgoing Trump administration will designate the al Houthi movement a foreign terrorist organization on January 19. He said Trump’s administration also plans to designate three al Houthi leaders as specially designated global terrorists.[i]

Al Houthi militants attacked anti–al Houthi forces near Rahabah district in central Yemen’s Ma’rib governorate on January 9.[ii]

Horn of Africa Security Brief:

Al Shabaab militants clashed with Somali National Army (SNA) and African Union Mission in Somalia forces in Beledweyne town in southern Somalia’s Hiraan region.[iii]

Suspected al Shabaab militants detonated an improvised explosive device (IED) targeting Kenyan troops near the Kenyan-Somali border on January 10. The attack killed at least four Kenyan soldiers and injured dozens of others.[iv]

Al Shabaab militants ambushed a SNA military base in central Somalia’s Middle Shabelle region on January 10. The attack killed three SNA soldiers.[v]


[i] Saphora Smith, “Pompeo to declare Houthis a terrorist group amid fears it will worsen Yemen crisis,” NBC News, January 11, 2021, https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/pompeo-declare-houthis-terrorist-group-amid-fears-it-will-worsen-n1253676.

[ii] “The Houthis are exposed to new loses on southern Ma’rib’s fronts,” News Yemen Fronts, January 10, 2021, https://www.newsyemen.net/new/66408; and “Al Houthi militia admits defeat in southern Ma’rib during fierce battles,” Al Mashhad al Yemeni, January 10, 2021, https://www.almashhad-alyemeni.com/190995.  

[iii] “Heavy fighting breaks out in Beledweyne,” Mareeg, January 9, 2011, https://mareeg.com/diyaarado-ciidamo-badan-siday-oo-saaka-ka-degay-magaalada-baladweyne/.

[iv] “Kenyan soldiers killed near Somali border,” Mareeg, January 10, 2021, https://mareeg.com/ciidamo-ka-tirsan-kenya-oo-lagu-dilay-meel-ku-dhow-xuduudka-somalia-iyo/.

[v] “Three soldiers killed in Al-Shabaab ambush in Middle Shabelle,” Hiiraan, January 11, 2021, https://www.hiiraan.com/news4/2021/Jan/181319/three_soldiers_killed_in_al_shabaab_ambush_in_middle_shabelle.aspx.

View Citations
TIMELINE
Arrow down red
Jan '21
Dec '20