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: UAE drones target Yemeni Army posts in Shabwah governorate; UAE–backed militia reinforcements arrive in Shabwah governorate; fighting in Shabwah governorate raises reported internal displacement in Yemen to highest levels since February 2022

Somalia: SNA forces clear village in southern Somalia; SNA forces secure strategic highway in central Somalia; al Shabaab ambushes SNA convoy in central Somalia; Galmudug State forces clear village in central Somalia; al Shabaab IED kills Somali Regional Liyu policemen in southwestern Somalia

Yemen Security Brief:

Likely UAE drones struck Yemeni Army posts in Shabwah governorate, southern Yemen, on August 15.[i] Anonymous sources claimed the airstrikes cleared the way for UAE–backed militias to advance towards a main highway in Ataq city that runs northwest to Marib governorate and southeast towards Hadramawt governorate. One of the strikes hit a civilian bus in Jaradan district and killed a Syrian citizen.[ii]

UAE–backed Giants Brigades and Shabwah Defense Forces reinforcements arrived in Ataq city, Shabwah governorate, on August 16.[iii] UAE–aligned forces have been fighting Saudi-backed Islah militias and Yemeni Army forces in Shabwah governorate since August 8.[iv]

Fighting in Shabwah has displaced over 300 families and caused internal displacement in Yemen to reach its highest levels since February 2022.[v]

Somalia Security Brief:

Somali National Army (SNA) forces cleared al Shabaab camps in Kili Jido village, near Janale, Lower Shabelle region, southern Somalia, on August 17.[vi] SNA officials claimed soldiers killed 10 al Shabaab fighters, wounded 13 others, and seized weapons.

SNA officials claimed on August 16 that security forces secured the Beledweyne-Mataban road in the Hiraan Region, central Somalia, over the last week.[vii] Officials also said al Shabaab fighters killed seven SNA soldiers during the operations.

Al Shabaab ambushed an SNA convoy traveling between Teedan and Qodqod in Beledweyne district, Hiraan Region, on August 16. [viii] The attack killed two soldiers and wounded one. SNA forces have been clearing and rebuilding Teedan and other villages near Mahas since at least August 14.[ix]

Galmudug State forces cleared al Shabaab from Bar Ujeed village in Elbur district, Galgudud region, central Somalia, on August 16.[x] Security officials claimed Galmudug soldiers killed at least two al Shabaab fighters.

An al Shabaab roadside improvised explosive device hit an Ethiopian Somali Region Liyu Police convoy near Washaaqo, El Barde district, Bakool region, southwestern Somalia, on August 16.[xi] The explosion killed at least two soldiers and wounded five others. The Liyu police continued patrol and securing operations in the area after the attack.

[i] Middle East Monitor, “UAE accused of bombing government forces in eastern Yemen,” August 16, 2022,

[ii] @YeMonitor, Twitter, August 15, 2022,

[iii] @YeMonitor, Twitter, August 16, 2022,

[iv] Christopher Muth and Maxim Ryabinin, “Gulf of Aden Security Review – August 8, 2022,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, August 8, 2022,

[v] International Organization for Migration, “Yemen — Rapid Displacement Tracking Update (07 August - 13 August 2022),” August 15, 2022,

[vi] Goobjoog, “SNA troops kill 10 Al-Shabaab fighters, wounds 13 in Lower Shabelle operation,” August 17, 2022,

[vii] Radio Dalsan, “The Somali military said that al Shabaab has been driven out of areas in the Hiraan region,” August 16, 2022,

[viii] Radio Risaala, “A soldier was killed in an attack in Hiraan region,” August 16, 2022,

[ix] Liam Karr, “Gulf of Aden Security Review – August 15, 2022,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, August 15, 2022,; Radio Risaala, “President Ali Gudlawe ‘will not leave behind al Shabaab captured Hirshabelle villages’,” August 17, 2022,

[x] Puntland Post, “Galmudug forces carried out a planned operation on the outskirts of Elbur district,” August 16, 2022,

[xi] Istar Abdi Yusuf, “A soldier form the Liyu Police forces was killed in an explosion,” Caasimada, August 16, 2022,

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