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: Yemenis protest against drone strikes in Ma’rib; sixth day of siege in Ibb; man commits suicide with grenade in Sana’a; gunmen hijack military pickup in al Mahwit; Adam Gadahn urges assassination of U.S. ambassadors; Salafist media channel manager survives assassination attempt; UK and German embassies reopen in Yemen

Horn of Africa: Somali federal government and Jubbaland administration resume negotiations; AMISOM forces sweep Marka, Lower Shabelle; landmines target AMISOM convoy in Kismayo, Lower Jubba; Somali government soldier murdered in Baidoa, Bay; Somali government discusses release of Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys; al Shabaab militants kill police in Garissa, Kenya; Puntland bans state media; radio technician murdered in Mogadishu; AMISOM forces repel attack in Taabta, Middle Jubba

Yemen Security Brief

  • Yemenis carrying al Qaeda flags demonstrated in Ma’rib on August 18 against American drone strikes.[1]
  • Armed men besieged houses in Ibb city on August 19. It was the sixth consecutive day that they prevented anyone from entering or exiting the houses. The cause of the siege was the death of four relatives last week due to tribal conflict over land.[2]
  • A man detonated a grenade in Habra, Sana’a city on August 19, killing himself and injuring two bystanders. Sources speculated that he killed himself because his son committed suicide in Saudi Arabia.[3]
  • Gunmen kidnapped a military pickup in al Rujum, al Mahwit governorate on August 19. The pickup was on its way to free a tanker truck that had been detained.[4]
  • Adam Gadahn, an American spokesman for al Qaeda, praised al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula’s (AQAP) standing reward for the death of the U.S. ambassador in Yemen and encouraged other groups to do the same in a video speech released on August 17. Separately, the Brigades of Abdullah Azzam issued an audio statement eulogizing AQAP deputy leader Said al Shihri.[5]
  • Sheikh Abdullah bin Muhammad al Nahidi, manager of the channel owned by the Salafist Rashad party, survived an assassination attempt in ‘Aza, al Bayda city on August 17. His nephew was wounded in the attack.[6]
  • The UK and German embassies in Sana’a reopened on August 18.[7]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Negotiations resumed in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on August 19 between the Somali Federal Government (SFG) and a delegation from the Jubbaland administration, which was led by President Ahmed Madobe and Vice President Abdullahi Sheikh Ismail Fartag.[8]
  • Somali and Djiboutian soldiers conducted a joint security sweep in Marka, Lower Shabelle region on August 19.[9]
  • Two landmines exploded in Kismayo, Lower Jubba region on August 19. The explosions caused severe damage to a Kenyan convoy of AMISOM peacekeepers, but exact casualties are unknown.[10]
  • Gunmen armed with pistols killed a Somali soldier in Baidoa, Bay region on August 18. The killers immediately fled and no arrests were made.[11]
  • A source revealed that the SFG held a meeting with clan leaders on August 18 to discuss releasing al Shabaab leader Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys. A clan spokesman said they did not reach an agreement.[12]
  • Forty al Shabaab militants attacked a police post in Garissa, Kenya on August 16. The attackers used mortars, rocket-propelled grenades (RPG) and guns, and killed four police officers. The attackers did not breach the post’s defenses.[13]
  • Puntland’s information minister issued a notice on August 18 banning Somali state media from operating in Puntland regions.[14]
  • Three men armed with pistols killed a radio technician in Shibis district in Mogadishu on August 17.[15]
  • Al Shabaab fighters attacked an AMISOM post in Taabta, Middle Jubba region on August 16. AMISOM and Somali National Army troops repelled the attack and killed three al Shabaab insurgents.[16]          

[1] “Ma’rib City Sees Armed Demonstration and al Qaeda Flags to Denounce Drone Strikes,” Barakish, August 19, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[2] “For the Sixth Day in Row, Armed Elements Besiege Homes and Gas and Petrol Stations Belonging to Beit Marah and Forbid Women and Children from Exiting, in Ibb,” Hour News, August 19, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[3] “Yemeni Citizen Commits Suicide with a Bomb… Sad over the Suicide of His Son in Saudi Arabia Because He Could Not Find a Job With a Sponsor,” Wefaq Press, August 19, 2013. Available:
[4] “Breaking: Gunmen Kidnap Military Pickup and Confiscate Soldier’s Weapons,” Barakish, August 19, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[5] “Al Qaeda’s Adam Gadahn Advises Jihadis in Libya and the Arab World to Kill U.S. and ’Crusader’ Ambassadors,” SITE Intel Group. August 17, 2013. Available at SITE.
[6] “Manager of Salafist Rushd Satellite Channel Survives Assassination Attempt,” Mareb Press, August 18, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[7] “UK, German Embassies Reopen in Yemen,” AP, August 18, 2013. Available:
[8] “Somalia: Jubaland and Federal Government to Resume Talks,” Garowe Online, August 19, 2013. Available:
[9] “Security Operations Underway in Marka Town,” Bar Kulan, August 19, 2013. Available:
[10] “Land Mine Explosion Targets AMISOM Troops in Kismayo, Lower Juba Region,” Shabelle, August 19, 2013. Available:
[11] “Somalia: Govt Military Soldier Shot Dead in Baidao, Bay province,” Shabelle, August 19. 2013. Available:
[12] “Somalia: Federal Government of Somalia Plans to Release Terror Chief Aweys,” Garowe Online, August 18, 2013. Available:
[13] “Suspected al Shabaab Attack Kills 4 Police Officers, Wounds 1 in Garissa,” Sabahi Online, August 19, 2013. Available:
[14] “Puntland Regional Administration Bans State Media From its Regions,” Dalsan Radio, August 19. 2013. Available:
[15] “Armed Men Shot and Killed a Radio Technician Working for State Media,” Dalsan Radio, August 17. 2013. Available:
[16] “AMISOM Repels al Shabaab Attack,” AMISOM Press Release, August 17, 2013. Available:
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