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: UN to evacuate wounded al Houthi fighters to Oman; UN-led consultations postponed to December 6; ISIS Wilayat al Bayda kills AQAP member in al Bayda governorate, central Yemen; chairman of the al Houthi Revolutionary Committee welcomes Turkish President’s remarks on Yemen

Horn of Africa: AFRICOM airstrike kills nine al Shabaab militants in Bay region, southern Somalia; al Shabaab detonates car bomb in Mogadishu; local militias kill four al Shabaab militants in Middle Shabelle region, central Somalia; Jubbaland announces offensive against al Shabaab in southern Somalia

Yemen Security Brief

A UN plane will evacuate 50 wounded al Houthi fighters to Oman on December 3 as a confidence-building measure ahead of UN-led peace consultations. UN Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths arrived in Sana’a on December 3 to coordinate the evacuation.[1]

UN-led peace consultations between President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi’s government and the al Houthi movement will begin on December 6, according to a senior Hadi government source. The source blamed al Houthi preconditions for the delay from December 4 to December 6.[2]

ISIS Wilayat al Bayda claimed to kill an al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) member with an explosive device in Wald Rabia district, northwestern al Bayda governorate, central Yemen on December 2. The attack has not been confirmed.[3]

Chairman of the al Houthi Revolutionary Committee Mohammed Ali al Houthi welcomed Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s recent statement on the conflict in Yemen on December 2. Erdogan said on December 2 that the international community bears responsibility for the deaths of Yemeni children.[4] 

Horn of Africa Security Brief

United States Africa Command (AFRICOM) conducted an airstrike in Lebede, Bay region, southern Somalia on November 30. The attack killed nine militants.[5]

Al Shabaab militants detonated CORRECTIONA previous version of this Security Review stated that the explosion was the result of a vehicle-borne IED. It is more likely that the explosion was a car bomb intended to kill the vehicle's occupant.a car bomb in Sayidka junction, Mogadishu on December 2. The car bomb killed an employee of Somalia's Ministry of Posts, Telecommunications, and Technology and injured two other people.[6]  

Al Shabaab militants and local militias clashed in Adale town, Middle Shabelle region, southern Somalia on December 3. Militias killed four al Shabaab fighters. The clash occurred after locals refused to pay taxes to al Shabaab.[7]

Jubbaland’s Minister of Security, Abdurashid Abdi Nour Janan, announced on December 2 that Jubbaland security forces will launch a joint offensive against towns held by al Shabaab in Jubbaland.[8]

[1] “UN Special Envoy to Yemen arrives to Sana’a,” Tahdeeth, December 3, 2018,; “Griffiths arrives to Sana’a again,” Asharq al Awsat, December 3, 2018,; and “UN to evacuate wounded Houthi rebels from Yemen before planned peace talks,” Middle East Eye, December 3, 2018,

[2] “:UN-led peace consultations postponed to December 6,” Arabi 21, December 3, 2018,

[3] Elisabeth Kendall, Twitter, December 2, 2018,

[4] “Erdoğan: the silent international community bears responsibility for the killing of children in Yemen,” Turkpress, December 2, 2018,; and Mohammed Ali al Houthi, Twitter, December 2, 2018,

[5] “Al-Shabaab Forces Degraded by U.S., Federal Government of Somalia,” United States Africa Command, December 1, 2018,

[6] “Somalia: 1 killed by car bomb in Mogadishu,” Mareeg, December 2, 2018,; and “One dead, two injured in Mogadishu bomb explosion,” Radio Shabelle,   

[7] “Deadly clash kills 4 people in south of Somalia,” Mareeg, December 3, 2018,  

[8] “Somali army to launch war on al Shabaab,” Mareeg, December 2, 2018,

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