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.

Yemen: AQAP fires mortars at a military base in Abyan governorate; assailants attempt to kill a security official in Abyan governorate; thousands march in Ataq to mark Southern Prisoners’ Day; Yemeni naval forces seize a Saudi Arabia-bound boat carrying narcotics; a telecommunications cable between Ma’rib and Hajjah governorates was cut; tribal gunmen and members of the CSF clash in Rada'a, killing one soldier; Hadi and Putin meet in Russia; southern leaders travel to Beirut to meet with former Yemeni vice president Ali Salim al Beidh

Horn of Africa: Muslim Youth Center posts statement commending al Shabaab for stealing classified Somali government documents; Somali government receives first arms shipment after lifting of UN embargo; Somali lawmakers meet in Kismayo regarding Jubbaland administration; Dahabshiil offices re-open in Hiraan region, Somalia; Carter Center says that Kenyan election results legitimate; Somali Muslim Brotherhood delegation visits Muslim Brotherhood headquarters in Moqattam, Egypt

Yemen Security Brief

  • Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) militants reportedly fired mortars at a military base in Abyan governorate on April 4, injuring three soldiers.[1]
  • Unknown assailants attempted to kill a security official near the headquarters of military intelligence by attaching a bomb to his car on April 4 in Abyan governorate. The officer survived the attack uninjured.[2]
  • Thousands of people marched in Ataq, Shabwah governorate on April 4 to mark “Southern Prisoners’ Day.” They chanted pro-south slogans and denounced the National Dialogue Conference.[3]
  • Yemeni naval forces seized a boat en route to Saudi Arabia carrying over 750 lbs of narcotics off the coast of al Hudaydah governorate on April 4. Two individuals were detained in the incident.[4]
  • A fiber-optic cable near Safir, Mar'ib governorate was cut on April 4, affecting telecommunication services in several governorates.[5]
  • Tribal gunmen clashed with members of the Central Security Forces (CSF) in Rada'a, al Bayda’ governorate on April 4, as reported by al Motamar, which is published by the General People’s Congress (GPC). According to local sources, the gunmen attacked the CSF unit as they were patrolling the city. One soldier was killed and one civilian wounded in the incident.[6]
  • President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on April 3. They discussed modernizing the Yemeni Air Force, and President Hadi asked Russia to sell Yemen new airplanes and helicopters.[7]
  • Several southern leaders arrived in Beirut, Lebanon on April 3 to meet with former Yemeni vice president Ali Salim al Beidh. They will reportedly discuss a unified solution to the southern question ahead of a UN and GCC-sponsored meeting for southern leaders.[8]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • The Muslim Youth Center posted a statement on its English-language blog on April 3 commending al Shabaab for its “intelligence win against the apostate government of Hassan Sheikh Mohamud,” commenting on recent reports that al Shabaab had stolen classified documents from the office of the Somali president.[9]
  • The Somali government took receipt of its first arms shipment, from Djibouti, since the UN Security Council lifted its ban on selling arms to Somalia, on April 4. The shipment included 50 armored personnel carriers and trucks.[10]
  • More than 40 Somali lawmakers met in Kismayo, Lower Jubba, on April 3, in a controversial meeting to show support for the Jubbaland formation conference, aimed at forming a semi-autonomous Jubbaland administration.[11]
  • At least nine Dahabshiil offices resumed operations in Hiraan region as of April 4, after being closed for four days on al Shabaab orders.[12]
  • The Carter Center, a U.S. based non-governmental organization that monitored the Kenyan elections, said in a report released on April 4 that while the Kenyan Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission failed to properly maintain voter tabulation systems, the overall election result reflected the voting patterns of the Kenyan people.[13]
  • A Somali Muslim Brotherhood delegation visited the Muslim Brotherhood’s headquarters in Moqattam, Cairo, on April 2.[14]


[1] ”Mortar shells injure three in Abyan,” Yemen Post, April 4, 2013. Available:
[2] ”Mortar shells injure three in Abyan,” Yemen Post, April 4, 2013. Available:
[3] “Thousands of people from Shabwah peacefully marched to commemorate Prisoners’ Day and reject the outcome of the “Sana’a dialogue,”’ Aden al Ghad, April 4, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[4] “Drug smuggling vessel seized in Baklan Island, al Hudaydah,” Saba News, April 4, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[5] “Fiber-optic cable is sabotaged in Marib governorate,” Saba News, April 4, 2013 [Arabic].  Available:
[6] “One soldier was killed in a criminal assault on a police patrol,” Al Motamar, April 4, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[7] “President Hadi to modernize Yemen's Air Force,” Yemen Post, April 3, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[8] “Ba'oum, Nasser, and al Attas arrive in Beirut to meet with Beidh and leave with a unified position,” Mareb Press, April 3, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[9] “MYC Congratulates Shabaab for Penetrating Somali Presidential Palace,” SITE Intel Group, April 3, 2013. Available at SITE.
[10] “Somalia Receives Arms from Djibouti,” Bar Kulan, April 4, 2013. Available:
[11] “Somalia: More than Forty Lawmakers Reach Kismayo,” Raxan Reeb, April 3, 2013. Available:
[12] “Dahabshil Resumes Operation in Hiran Following Rebel Ban,” Bar Kulan, April 4, 2013. Available:
[13] “Carter Centre Concurs with Election Results, Admits IEBC Faced Challenges,” The Nation, April 4, 2013. Available:
[14] Nouran el Behairy, “Somali Brotherhood Delegation in Egypt,” Daily News Egypt, April 3, 2013. Available:
View Citations
Arrow down red
May '13
Apr '13
Mar '13