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: Southern separatists seize control of Aden; al Houthi forces launch drones at air base in southwestern Saudi Arabia

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab militants surrender to Jubbaland Security Forces in Afmadow town; Jubbaland elders call on SFG and UN to oversee upcoming elections

Yemen Security Brief

Forces aligned with the Transitional Political Council for the South (STC), a southern Yemeni secessionist group, seized effective control of Aden city, the de facto capital of Yemen, on August 10. STC-aligned forces had clashed with forces aligned with President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi’s government in Aden since August 7. The clashes killed more than 70 people. Saudi Arabia offered to host talks between the STC and President Hadi’s government on August 10 and called for the STC to abandon the military positions it had seized in the city. STC-aligned forces remained in most of their positions throughout Aden, however. STC President Aydarus al Zubaidi stated on August 12 that the STC was committed to a ceasefire.[1]

Al Houthi forces claimed to conduct multiple drone attacks against King Khaled Air Base near Khamis Mushayt city in southwestern Saudi Arabia on August 11. The Saudi-led coalition claimed to intercept a drone in the area.[2]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

Two al Shabaab militants surrendered to Jubbaland Security Forces in Afmadow town in Lower Jubba region in southern Somalia on August 10.[3]

The Jubbaland Council of Elders, a committee of clan elders tasked with selecting parliamentarians for upcoming elections in Jubbaland State in southern Somalia, wrote a letter to UN Special Representative for Somalia James Swan on August 10. The elders requested that the Somali Federal Government and UN oversee the Jubbaland elections, which are scheduled to begin August 23.[4]

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[1] Mohammed Mukhashef, “Yemen's pro-government coalition fractures as separatists grab control in Aden,” Reuters, August 10, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-yemen-security/yemens-pro-government-coalition-fractures-as-separatists-grab-control-in-aden-idUSKCN1V007B?feedType=RSS&feedName=worldNews&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Reuters%2FworldNews+%28Reuters+World+News%29 ; Sarah El Sirgany and Ivana Kottasová, “Yemen separatists say they've seized the key port of Aden,” CNN, August 12, 2019, https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/11/middleeast/yemen-aden-southern-separatists-intl/index.html ; Ahmed al-Haj and Samy Madgy, “Security officials: Yemeni separatists control city of Aden,” Associated Press, August 10, 2019, https://www.apnews.com/f0beacfa9cd14efa85b197e8fe3af470 ; “As many as 40 killed and 260 injured in Yemen's Aden: U.N. statement,” Reuters, August 11, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-yemen-security-toll/as-many-as-40-killed-and-260-injured-in-yemens-aden-u-n-statement-idUSKCN1V108B?feedType=RSS&feedName=worldNews&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Reuters%2FworldNews+%28Reuters+World+News%29 ; Mohammed Mukhashef, “Saudi-led coalition moves against separatists in Yemen,” Reuters, August 11, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-yemen-security/saudi-led-coalition-moves-against-separatists-in-yemen-idUSKCN1V1043?feedType=RSS&feedName=worldNews&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Reuters%2FworldNews+%28Reuters+World+News%29 ; “Command of the Coalition to Restore Legitimacy in Yemen calls for an immediate ceasefire in Aden, and stresses it will use military force against those who violate it,” Saudi Press Agency, August 11, 2019, https://www.spa.gov.sa/viewstory.php?lang=en&newsid=1957279 ; “Yemeni Government Welcomes Coalition's Call for Ceasefire in Aden, Urgent Meeting in KSA,” Saudi Press Agency, August 11, 2019, https://www.spa.gov.sa/viewstory.php?lang=en&newsid=1957300 ; and “’Committed to ceasefire in Yemen,’ says leader of Southern Transitional Council,” al Arabiya, August 12, 2019, http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/gulf/2019/08/12/-Committed-to-ceasefire-in-Yemen-says-leader-of-Southern-Transitional-Council-.html

[2] Al Masirah, Twitter, August 11, 2019, https://twitter.com/MasirahTV/status/1160636955958349825 ; and “Forces of Coalition for Supporting Legitimacy in Yemen intercept and shoot down drone launched from Sanaa province by Iranian-backed Houthi terrorist militia,” Saudi Press Agency, August 11, 2019, https://www.spa.gov.sa/viewstory.php?lang=en&newsid=1957700

[3] “Al Shabaab militants make a surprise move surrendering in Somalia,” Garowe, August 12, 2019, https://www.garoweonline.com/en/news/somalia/al-shabab-militants-make-a-surprise-move-surrendering-in-somalia; and Mustaqbal Radio, Twitter, August 11, 2019, https://twitter.com/mustaqbalmedia/status/1160086844333285376.

[4] Harun Maruf, Twitter, August 10, 2019, https://twitter.com/HarunMaruf/status/1160300399871561728; and “Elders in Jubbaland Petition UN over political deadlock ahead of state polls,” Hiraan, August 11, 2019, http://www.hiiraan.com/news4/2019/Aug/165141/elders_in_jubbaland_petition_un_over_political_deadlock_ahead_of_state_polls.aspx.

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