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: Al Houthi fighters clash with tribesmen in Ibb governorate; Saudi-led coalition airstrikes target al Houthi training camp near Sana’a city; Saudi-led coalition conducts airstrikes in support of tribal rebellion in Hajjah governorate; al Houthi forces fire ballistic missiles at southern Saudi Arabia

Horn of Africa: Burundian AMISOM forces begin partial withdrawal from Somalia; Sudanese president announces state of emergency

Yemen Security Brief

Al Houthi fighters clashed with fighters from the Bani Miftah tribe in al Qahr district in northern Ibb governorate in central Yemen on February 21 and 22. The Bani Miftah tribe began fighting al Houthi forces on February 21 after al Houthi fighters raided a number of Bani Miftah villages to forcibly conscript fighters, according to pro-Hadi government media.[1]

Saudi-led coalition airstrikes targeted the al Houthi Jarban training camp in Sanhan district, southeast of Sana’a city, Yemen’s capital, on February 22.[2]

The Saudi-led Coalition also conducted over a dozen airstrikes in multiple locations in Kushar district in Hajjah governorate in western Yemen on February 22. Saudi-led coalition forces are supporting a tribal rebellion against al Houthi forces in Hajjah governorate.[3]

Al Houthi forces fired a Zilzal 1 ballistic missile targeting Saudi troops near the port of Asir in southwestern Saudi Arabia on February 20.[4]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

Two hundred Burundian forces from the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) withdrew from Somalia and returned to Bujumbura, Burundi’s capital, on February 21. The African Union has requested that Burundi withdraw 1,000 of its 5,400 AMISOM troops from Somalia by the end of February. The government of Burundi threatened to withdraw all its troops from AMISOM if the African Union insists on the withdrawal of 1,000 troops this month. Burundian soldiers constitute close to a quarter of AMISOM forces.[5]

Sudanese President Omar al Bashir announced a one-year state of emergency in Sudan on February 22 after months of anti-regime protests. Bashir announced that he will step down from his role as the head of his National Congress Party but will remain head of state. He also stated that Sudanese parliament will postpone a vote to amend the constitution to allow him to run for another term in 2020. Government security forces previously arrested ten opposition party leaders ahead of protests in Khartoum, the capital of Sudan, on February 21. Among those arrested were the deputy head of the leading opposition Umma party, Mariam Sadiq al Mahdi, and the Communist Party leader, Mokhtar al-Khatib.[6]

Visit our YemenSomalia, and Sudan story streams.

[1] “After Hajoor and al Husha - a third tribal uprising in central Yemen cuts back the Houthi and forces the militia to withdraw,” Mareb Press, February 22, 2019,

[2] “Arab coalition fighters launched raids on sites of the Houthis in the capital Sana’a (targeted sites),” Al Montasaf, February 22, 2019,; and Masirah TV, Twitter, February 22, 2019,

[3] “Intense air raids on Houthi strongholds,” 7adramout, February 22, 2019,; and “Threat Update: Situation Report - February 21, 2019,” Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute, February 21, 2019,

[4] “The launch of a Zilzal 1 rocket on a gathering of mercenaries in Asir,” Al Masirah, February 20, 2019,

[5] Eloge Willy Kaneza, “Withdrawal of 1,000 Burundian soldiers from Somalia begins,” Associated Press, February 21, 2019,; Will Ross, Twitter, February 21, 2019,

[6] “Sudan’s Bashir declares one year state of emergency,” Al Jazeera, February 22, 2019,; Yousra Elbagir, Twitter, February 22, 2019,; and Yousra Elbagir, Twitter, February 22, 2019,; and “Sudan government arrests opposition leaders ahead of protest,” Associated Press, February 21, 2019,


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