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 drone strikes in Wadi Abeidah, Ma’rib and al ‘Ayoun, Hadramawt target AQAP; Yemeni official denies AQAP plot; Netherlands evacuates Sana’a embassy; al Houthis kill Salafists in Sa’ada; tribal clashes in Ma’rib

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab attack repelled in Baidoa, Bay region; AMISOM pushes back al Shabaab raids in Shalambood and Janale, Lower Shabelle; al Shabaab attacks World Food Programme trucks in Boosaaso, Bay region; al Shabaab releases biographies of martyrs from Minnesota; al Shabaab claims over 270 attacks in Mogadishu; leaders meet in Mogadishu to discuss security and instability; journalists in Tanzania face increasing threats; Somaliland will not attend Somalia-EU conference in Brussels; UK’s new ambassador travels to Puntland for first time; Ramadan Football Tournament will continue despite threats; international flights to resume in Kenya airport after fire

Yemen Security Brief

  • A U.S. drone strike killed six suspected al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) members in Wadi Abeidah, Ma’rib governorate on August 8. One report suggested two of those killed were civilians. A second drone strike killed two AQAP militants in al ‘Ayoun, just east of al Mukalla, Hadramawt governorate later that day.[1]
  • According to Barakish, a security official in Hadramawt denied there was an AQAP plot to take over the coastal city of al Mukalla. The Yemeni spokesman in Washington announced his skepticism that AQAP even had the resources to take over a city the size of al Mukalla. [2]
  • Al Houthi gunmen killed five Salafists and wounded four more in Damaj, Sa’ada governorate on August 8.[3]
  • Clashes in Ma’rib city wounded 12 on August 7. The clashes broke out because of a vendetta between two tribes.[4]
  • The Netherlands evacuated all personnel from their embassy in Yemen on August 7. Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans said that the Dutch embassy in Yemen was one of the potential targets of a terrorist attack.[5]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Somali forces successfully repelled an al Shabaab attack with heavy artillery in Baidoa, Bay region on August 7 and reclaimed the town. Casualty counts were not reported.[6]
  • AMISOM forces fought back al Shabaab attacks on Shalambood and Janale, Lower Shabelle on August 7. Casualty counts were not reported.[7]
  • Two trucks carrying food for the World Food Programme were ambushed and burned near Boosaaso, Bari region on the night of August 6, leaving at least one driver wounded. Al Shabaab claimed responsibility.[8]
  • Al Shabaab released on August 7 the first episode in a new series of videos focusing on three jihadists from Minnesota who were killed in Somalia.[9]
  • Al Shabaab military spokesman Sheikh Abdi Aziz Abu Mus’ab claimed that the group has “carried more than 270 attacks against the invaders and we will continue to target them more.”[10]
  • Government officials met with local Mogadishu administrators on August 7 to discuss security and ways in which to combat the rising instability in the city.[11]
  • The Committee to Protect Journalists report from August 6 states that journalists in Tanzania face increasing threats and lack necessary protection, citing at least 10 attacks on media personnel since September 2012.[12]  

[1] “Suspected U.S. Drone Kills 6 Militants in Yemen,” USA Today, August 8, 2013. Available: Hakim Almasmari. Mohammed Jamjoom and Ben Brumfield, “More suspected al Qaeda militants killed as drone strikes intensify in Yemen,” CNN, August 8, 2013. Available:
[2] “Security Official Denies Statements By Press Advisor to Basindawa,” Barakish, August 8, 2013. Available: “Albasha, Mohammad (@Yemen411), “For the record: #AQAP doesn't have the man power nor the capabilities to capture a city the size of Mukkala in Hadramout #Yemen #CommonSense” 7 Aug 2013, 10:57 A.M. Available: Maria Abi-Habib, Margaret Coker and Siobhan Gorman, “Yemen Steps Back From Terror-Plot Claims, Highlighting U.S.'s Challenge,” Wall Street Journal, August 7, 2013. Available:
[3] “Five Damaj Salafists Killed and Four Wounded by Houthi Gunmen,” Mareb Press, August 8, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[4] “Breaking: 12 Wounded in Clashes in Downtown Ma’rib City,” Barakish, August 8, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[5] “Dutch Embassy in Yemen Was Potential Terror Target- Foreign Minister” Reuters-UK, August 7, 2013. Available:
  [6] Maalik Eng, “String of battles between allied forces and Alshabab in different parts of Somalia,” Shabelle News, August 7, 2013. Available:  
[7] Maalik Eng, “String of battles between allied forces and Alshabab in different parts of Somalia,” Shabelle News, August 7, 2013. Available:
[8] Cabdale Muumin, “WFP food convoy attacked, two trucks burned,” Dalsan Radio, August 7, 2013. Available:  
[9] “Shabaab Releases First Episode in Series on Slain Fighters from Minnesota,” SITE Monitoring Service, August 7, 2013. Available at SITE.
[10] “Al-Shabaab claims 270 attacks in Somalia,” Sabahi, August 7, 2013. Available:
[11] Cabdale Muumin, “Government Officials, security departments discuss Mogadishu security,” Dalsan Radio, August 7, 2013. Available:
  [12] “Tanzanian journalists under siege,” Sabahi, August 7, 2013. Available:
View Citations


Arrow down red
Sep '13
Aug '13
Jul '13