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: British-drafted proposal to UN Security Council proposes sanctions committee for Yemen; AQAP releases video detailing four 2013 operations; unknown assailants blow up oil pipeline in Ma’rib

Horn of Africa: Somali government to increase security measures in Banadir region; security forces conduct search operations in Hiraan and Lower Jubba regions; al Shabaab threatens Turks in Somalia; Somali President calls for support at African Union conference on New Deal

Yemen Security Brief

  • The Associated Press obtained a British-drafted proposal for a UN Security Council resolution authorizing sanctions against individuals or organizations in Yemen that threaten its peace, security, or stability. The draft does not name so-called “spoilers,” but instead would establish a committee to decide who would face the sanctions.[1]
  • Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) released a video on February 24 entitled, “Deterring Aggression #3.” The video provides information on the planning and motivation behind capturing a Yemeni army compound in al Mukalla governorate on September 30, 2013, raiding an army base in Abyan governorate on October 18, 2013, storming the Yemeni Defense Ministry in Sana’a on December 5, 2013, and attacking a security building in Aden governorate on December 7, 2013.[2] 
  • Unknown assailants blew up an oil pipeline in al Damashqa in Ma’rib governorate, cutting off the flow of oil to the Ras Issa oil terminal on February 24.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Somali Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed chaired an extraordinary cabinet session on February 24 that also included the Mayor of Mogadishu, Banadir region’s district commissioners, and representatives from Somalia’s security agencies. The government will increase security measures in the region in response to the February 21 attack on Villa Somalia and will also conduct an investigation into that attack.[4]
  • Hiraan region police officers, supported by Ethiopian and Djiboutian AMISOM troops, conducted operations in Beledweyne on February 25. At least 18 suspects have been arrested. Separately, Jubbaland security forces in conducted search operations in Kismayo in Lower Jubba region.[5]
  • Al Shabaab spokesman Sheikh Ali Dhere, also known as Ali Mohamed Rage, accused Turkish aid workers and officials in Somalia of working in the interest of NATO, what he called an enemy of the Muslim people. He said that al Shabaab sees Turks as no different than Americans, Brits, or AMISOM soldiers.[6]
  • The African Union organized a conference in Mogadishu on February 25 on Somalia’s New Deal that was attended by Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, cabinet and parliament members, Galmudug state and Jubbaland Administration representatives, and members of the international community. The President asked for the pledges made in Brussels to be honored, saying that his government has taken steps to improve transparency and limit corruption.[7]     
[1] Edith M. Lederer, “UN Proposal Would Sanction Peace Spoilers in Yemen,” AP, February 24, 2014. Available:
[2] “AQAP explains details of four of its most dangerous operations against the army,” al Masdar Online, February 25, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[3] “Yemen’s Maarib oil pipeline blown up again: Official,” Reuters, February 25, 2014. Available:
[4] “Somalia: PM Declares Tough Security Measures Following Extraordinary Cabinet Meeting,” Raxanreeb Radio, February 25, 2014. Available:
[5] “Somalia: Massive Security Operation Underway in Beletwenyn, Hiran,” Raxanreeb Radio, February 25, 2014. Available:
“Many Captured in Kismayo’s Search Crackdowns,” Shabelle, February 25, 2014. Available:
[6] Hamza Mohamed, “Somalia’s al-Shabab Vows to Make Comeback,” al Jazeera English, February 24, 2014. Available:
[7] “Somalia: The New Deal for Somalia Summit Discussed in Mogadishu,” Raxanreeb Radio, February 25, 2014. Available:
“President Hassan ‘It is Essential that Pledges are Honoured in Order to Sustain Confidence in the New Deal,’” Office of the President (Somalia), February 24, 2014. Available:
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