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: Airstrike in south Yemen kills eight militants

Horn of Africa: WFP food convoy looted in Hiraan region; al Shabaab bans tahajjud prayer; al Shabaab executes youth in Mogadishu; Somalia’s armed forces seeing improvements

Yemen Security Brief

  • An airstrike in south Yemen killed eight suspected al Qaeda-linked militants, who were members of the group Ansar al Sharia (Supporters of Islamic Law). Yemeni officials report that one of the militants was a local leader named Abu Jaber al Sanaai. The Yemeni defense ministry website reported that three militants killed in fighting in Abyan were from Ma’rib governorate. They were identified as: Ahmed Saleh Farhan bin Jalal, Hamza Saleh Hamza bin Jarullah, and Mohamed bin Mubarak Mohamed bin Jarullah.[1]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • An armed group looted a World Food Program (WFP) convoy traveling from Galkayo in Mudug region to parts of Gedo region in Mataban district in Hiraan region. Abdullah Warsame Hersi, the former district commissioner of Mataban, was shot and killed attempting to prevent looting of the 30 WFP-chartered trucks.[2]
  • Al Shabaab in Berdale town in Bay region banned the tahajjud prayer, which is a voluntary, nighttime prayer. The group shut down two local mosques and dispersed people gathered for the prayer.[3]
  • The body of Qadar Omar Siad, who had allegedly been kidnapped by al Shabaab, was found decapitated in Mogadishu outside of the former Pasta factory. Mogadishu residents report that al Shabaab has beheaded at least 11 civilians over the past two weeks.[4]
  • The Associated Press reports that Somalia’s armed forces have received regular paychecks since December 2010. Italy and the U.S. fund the armed forces, which are made up of 10,000 soldiers and 5,000 police. Brigade units are still organized by clan, however.[5]

[1] “Airstrike Kills 8 Suspected al-Qaida Militants in Southern Yemen,” AP, August 25, 2011. Available:
“3 Terrorists Killed From Ma’rib in the Ongoing Confrontations in Abyan,”, August 26, 2011. Available:
“Yemen Army Kills Three Militants in South-Ministry,” Reuters, August 26, 2011. Available:
[2] “Armed Gangs Kill Former Mataban District Commissioner,” Radio Bar-Kulan, August 26, 2011. Available:
[3] “Berdale Based Al-Shabaab Bans Tahajud Prayer,” Radio Bar-Kulan, August 26, 2011. Available:
[4] “Headless Body of Young Somali Discovered in Mogadishu,” Shabelle Media Network, August 26, 2011. Available:
“Somali Islamists Behead 11 Civilians in Capital,” AP, August 26, 2011. Available:
[5] Katharine Houreld, “Instructors Struggle to Rebuild Somalia’s Army,” AP, August 25, 2011. Available:
View Citations
Arrow down red
Sep '11
Aug '11
Jul '11