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: Third drone strike kills 3 in al Qatan, Hadramawt; Ma’rib pipeline resumes flow; UN Envoy condemns violence; five Salafists killed by al Houthis in Sa’ada; names of Ma’rib air strike casualties revealed; al Houthi conflict resolved in al Radma, Ibb

Horn of Africa: AMISOM forces raid al Shabaab cell in Afmadow, Lower Jubba; Ethiopian military plane crashes in Mogadishu, four killed and two hospitalized; al Shabaab spokesman calls Uganda summit a failure; Somali president calls for al Shabaab surrender; Puntland president will seek second term; delegation from Djibouti arrives in Somalia to discuss security; Soma Oil & Gas Exploration Ltd. to invest $20 million

Yemen Security Brief

  • A third suspected U.S. drone strike on August 8 killed three people in the al Qatan area of Hadramawt. One report indicated that one of those killed was thought to be a member of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).[1]
  • The main Ras Isa oil pipeline in Ma’rib governorate resumed pumping crude oil on August 8 after being bombed on August 3.[2]
  • UN Special Envoy to Yemen Jamal Benomar expressed his regret at the recent security incidents and violence in Yemen. He expressed his hope that those involved would soon be caught and held accountable.[3]
  • Five Salafists were killed and nine wounded in an ambush by al Houthi fighters in Sa’ada governorate on August 8. The Salafists were traveling on the outskirts of the village of Damaj.[4]
  • Security sources in Yemen disclosed the names of AQAP fighters killed in the August 8 drone strike in al Shabwan, Ma’rib. They were Abdullah Qaid Arfaj al Marouni, al Hasan Qaid Salem Arfaj and al Hussein Qaid Salem Arfaj.[5]
  • A security source in Ibb governorate announced the resolution of the conflict between the al Houthis and local tribes in al Radma on August 8.[6]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • AMISOM troops conducted a raid on a high- level al Shabaab cell in Afmadow, Lower Jubba on the evening of August 8. The group was reportedly plotting an attack on AMISOM targets in the city. Among the casualties were twenty-four al Shabaab members, three of them foreign fighters, and two Somali National Army (SNA) soldiers. Four SNA soldiers sustained injuries.[7]
  • An Ethiopian military plane transporting ammunitions burst into flames after crash landing at Mogadishu’s Aden Adde international airport on the morning of August 9. Four of the six crew members were killed and two were hospitalized. The Somali government has named a commission to investigate the incident.[8]
  • Al Shabaab military spokesman Sheikh Abdi Aziz Abu Mus’ab denounced the recent Uganda summit of AMISOM contributing country leaders as a failure.[9]
  • Somali president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud called for the surrender of al Shabaab fighters and encouraged them to “join into the peaceful life.”[10]
  • Abdirahman Sheikh Mohamed Farole, the current president of Puntland, announced that he will seek reelection for a second term in the upcoming January 2014 elections. Other candidates are expected to declare their candidacy in the coming days.[11]
  • A delegation led by Djibouti’s defense minister arrived in Beledweyne, Hiraan region on August 9 in order to discuss security issues with top government officials.[12]
  • Soma Oil & Gas Exploration Ltd. plans to invest $20 million to survey Somalia as a result of deal signed earlier in the week.[13]

[1] Ahmed al-Haj, “3 suspected US drones kill 12 militants in Yemen,” Associated Press, August 8, 2013. Available:
Hakim Almasmari, Mohammed Jamjoon and Ben Brumfield, “More suspected al Qaeda militants killed as drone strikes intensify in Yemen,” CNN, August 8, 2013. Available:
[2] “Marib-Ras Isa crude pipeline repaired, pumping resumed,” Saba Net, August 8, 2013. Available:
[3]“Jamal Benomar regrets the security incidents in Yemen and hopes to catch and hold accountable those involved,” Saba Net, August 8, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[4]“Local source: 5 Salifists slain in a Houthi ambush in Damaj, Sa’ada,” [Arabic] al Masdar, August 8, 2013. Available:
[5] “Disclosure of names of three of the al Qaeda men killed in air strike in Ma’rib,” Mareb Press, August 9, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[6] “Ibb: Military source announces end of fighting between al Houthis and tribes in al Radma district,” Adsah Yemen, August 9, 2013 [Arabic]. Available: 
[7] “SRCC congratulates AMISOM, Somali National Army for foiling Al-Shabaab planned attacks,” Bar-kulan, August 9, 2013. Available:
[8] “Military plane bursts into flames at Mogadishu airport,” Reuters, August 9, 2013. Available:
Maalik Som, “Somali Gov’t names committee to probe the cause of the plane accident in Mogadishu,” Shabelle News, August 9, 2013. Available:
“watch pictures of the plane crush in Mogadishu Airport,” Shabelle News, August 9, 2013. Available:
[9] Cabdale Muumin, “Al Shabab says AMISOM summit in Kampala failed,” Dalsan Radio, August 9, 2013. Available:
[10] Cabdale Muumin, “Presideht Hassan calls Al Shabab fighters to surrender,” Dalsan Radio, August 9, 2013. Available:
[11] Maalik Som, “Current Puntland president to contest in the coming presidential elections,” Shabelle News, August 9, 2013. Available:
[12] Maalik Som, “A Government delegation from Djibouti arrived at Beledweyne,” Shabelle News, August 9, 2013. Available:
[13] “Soma Oil & Gas May Invest $20 Million to Survey War-Torn Somalia,” Bloomberg, August 9, 2013. Available:
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