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: Two foreign workers released by tribal kidnappers in Abyan governorate; Yemeni government vows to continue fight against AQAP; al Qaeda denies reports of militant arrests in Lawder; tribal clashes in Abyan leave two people killed and several other wounded; Yemeni Interior Ministry raises security alert

Horn of Africa: Latest fighting in Mogadishu creates further food shortages; Somali president appeals for urgent international support; Uganda reportedly prepared to send additional troops to Somali with U.S. support

Yemen Security Brief

  • Two foreign workers who were kidnapped Friday by armed tribesmen in Abyan governorate were released Monday, according to an Interior Ministry statement posted on its website.  Tribesmen had kidnapped them to demand the release of a fellow tribe member detained for alleged ties to al Qaeda.[1]

  • In a statement released by the Interior Ministry, the Yemeni government has vowed to continue its strikes against al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. The statement also said that al Qaeda attacks against Yemeni security forces will not dissuade the fight against the terrorist organization.  Reportedly, over 70 strikes have been carried out against al Qaeda militants in the past few months.[2]

  • AQAP militants in Abyan governorate issued a statement denying reports that Yemeni security forces have arrested ten al Qaeda fighters in Lawder. The statement, which was distributed to mosques, markets and shops throughout Zinjibar, also denied press reports that seven al Qaeda members were killed.[3]

  •  At least two people were killed and several others wounded in clashes between the al Salah and al Mihriz tribes in Abyan governorate, local sources report.[4]

  •  The Interior Ministry raised the national security alert Tuesday as officials warn of an increased terrorist threat. Sources also report that officials from the Interior Ministry will soon conduct a nationwide tour of governorate security departments to discuss on a local level the security threats faced by each governorate.[5]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • As heavy fighting in the Somali capital continued Monday, officials warn of food shortages due to the closure of many businesses and markets across Mogadishu. “Many people, particularly in the north of the city and parts of the south, where the fighting has been heaviest, have been stuck in their homes for the past eight days. They have run out of food, water and other essentials and have no access to any help,” Asha Sha’ur, a civil society activist, said. The areas most affected are Hodan, Hawl Wadag and Wardhigley in south Mogadishu, and Abdi Aziz, Shibis and Bondhere in the north.[6]

  •  TFG President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed appealed to the international community for aid Monday as fighting continued in Mogadishu. “It is quite impractical to expect that Somalia alone to contain the even al Qaeda - al Shabaab alliance, as Somalia is emerging from twenty years of destruction and chaotic political environment,” said the Somali president in a statement.[7]

  •  Ugandan General Aronda Nyakairima said in an interview that Uganda is prepared to deploy “up to 10,000” of its reserve troops Somalia “if the U.S. government provides funding for the mission.” The general stated that a final decision on the matter of additional troops has yet to be made, but will ultimately be determined by “conclusive talks” with the Obama Administration.[8]

[1] “Tribal kidnappers Release Turkish and Syrian in Abyan,” Yemen Post, August 30, 2010. Available:
[2] “Yemen Vows to Continue Strikes on al Qaeda,” Yemen Post, August 30, 2010. Available:
[3] “al Qaeda in Abyan circulates statement denying members arrested or surrendered,” Yemen News, August 30, 2010. Available:
[4] “Two People Killed and Several Injured in Tribal Clashes in Abyan,” Yemen Post, August 30, 2010. Available:
[5] “Security alert boosted nationwide,” Saba Net, August 31, 2010. Available:
[6] “Mogadishu Fighting Cuts Food Supplies,” IRIN, August 30, 2010. Available:
[7] “Somali President Appeals for Urgent International Support,” Somaliweyn Media Center, August 30, 2010. Available:
[8] “Army ready to send 10,000 to Somalia,” Somaliweyn Media Center, August 31, 2010. Available:
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