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: President Hadi states that he will not participate in talks until al Houthi movement complies with Stockholm Agreement; AQAP attacks al Houthi forces in al Bayda governorate; Hadi government military commander resigns because of unpaid salaries

Horn of Africa: SNA and Jubbaland forces raid al Shabaab bases in Jamame; al Shabaab ambushes SNA convoy in Mogadishu; al Shabaab attacks AMISOM convoy with IEDs in Mogadishu; AFRICOM denies al Shabaab claims that airstrike targeted civilians in Lower Shabelle region

Yemen Security Brief

President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi stated on February 12 that he will not participate in a new round of talks with the al Houthi Movement until the ceasefire in al Hudaydah is fully implemented and al Houthi forces fully withdraw from the city. Hadi met with UN Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths earlier on February 12.[1]

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) claimed to attack al Houthi forces in Dhi Na’im district in al Bayda governorate in central Yemen on February 12. AQAP militants detonated two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) on two al Houthi supply vehicles and then detonated a third IED targeting al Houthi forces sent to retrieve the wounded and killed. AQAP also claimed to target al Houthi forces with two IEDs in the al Batiha area of Dhi Na’im district on 22 January.[2]

Hadi government Commander of the Sa’ada Axis Brigadier General Abeed al Athla resigned on February 13. Al Athla resigned due to delays in resupplying his troops and unpaid salaries, according to military sources.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

Somali National Army (SNA) forces and Jubbaland security forces attacked al Shabaab bases near Jamame town in Lower Jubba region in southern Somalia on February 12. The SNA claimed to destroy multiple al Shabaab positions.[4]

Al Shabaab militants ambushed an SNA convoy travelling in the Dharkenley district in Mogadishu, Somalia’s capital, on February 12. Al Shabaab claimed to kill one soldier.[5]

Al Shabaab militants attacked Burundian African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) forces with an improvised explosive device in Heliwa district, Mogadishu on February 13.[6]

U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) denied al Shabaab’s claim that an AFRICOM airstrike in southern Somalia on February 11 intentionally targeted civilians. AFRICOM stated that the airstrike near Janale town in Lower Shabelle region killed 11 militants and injured no civilians. AFRICOM said that the airstrike targeted “terrorist infrastructure.”[7]

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[1] “Yemen President refuses new round of talks until implementation of Sweden deal,” Yemen Online, February 13, 2019,; and Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi, Twitter, February 12, 2019,

[2] Elisabeth Kendall, Twitter, February 13, 2019,; and “AQAP claims bombing Houthis and rescue vehicle, IED blast on IS fighters in al Bayda’” SITE Intelligence Group, February 13, 2019, English translation available by subscription at 

[3] “A senior military commander surprises President Hadi and submits his resignation,” al Mashhad al Yemeni, February, 13, 2019,

[4] “SNA forces destroy al Shabaab bases in Lower Jubba, Somalia,” Goobjoog, February 13, 2019,

[5] “Al Shabaab ambushes army convoy outside Somali capital,” Radio Shabelle, February 13, 2019,; and “Shabaab charges U.S. with taking revenge on civilians for failed raid, claims Americans disregard for lives strengthens its Jihadi call,” SITE Intelligence Group, February 12, 2019, English translation available by subscription at

[6] Mohamed Rooble, Twitter, February 13, 2019,; and “Deadly explosions hit African Union troops in Mogadishu,” Mareeg, February 13, 2019,

[7] “Al Shabaab degraded by U.S, Federal Government of Somalia,” AFRICOM, February 13, 2019,; and “Gulf of Aden Security Review - February 12, 2019,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, February 12, 2019,

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