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 and allied military forces engage in heavy fighting with Ansar al Sharia in al Bayda; suspected Ansar al Sharia militants detonate an IED in Sana’a; al Houthis fight with local tribesmen in Ibb

Horn of Africa: Somali MP killed in Mogadishu; Puntland security forces capture al Shabaab fighters in Bari region; Kenyan MP killed in Nairobi

Yemen Security Brief

  • Al Houthi militants and military forces fought Ansar al Sharia militants in al Bayda from February 7 to February 9. The fighting concluded on February 9 with the allied military and al Houthi forces announcing that they had taken control of the Dhi Na’im Mountains in al Bayda. The area had been considered a stronghold for Ansar al Sharia.[1]
  • Suspected Ansar al Sharia militants detonated an improvised explosive device (IED) in front of the Presidential Palace in the capital Sana’a on February 7. The explosion injured two people.[2]
  • Tribesmen attacked al Houthi militants in al Makhadir, Ibb on February 8. The attack came in retaliation for the al Houthis reportedly destroying the homes of tribesmen in the area during the prior days.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Al Shabaab militants assassinated a Somali member of parliament in Mogadishu on February 9. Al Shabaab has claimed credit for the attack and stated that they would target other MPs.[4]
  • Puntland security forces captured al Shabaab militants in Boosaaso, Bari region on February 8. The al Shabaab fighters were attacking a checkpoint and were captured while trying to escape.[5]
  • Unidentified gunmen killed a Kenyan member of parliament in Nairobi on February 7. No one has claimed credit for the attack.[6]

[1] “Military and al Houthi forces take control of Dhi Na’im mountains in al Bayda,” al Masdar, February 9, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“Heavy fighting between al Houthis and al Qaeda in al Bayda,” al Watanye, February 7, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“Al Houthis advancing on Na’im Mountains in al Bayda,” al Masdar, February 8, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
[2] “Two injured by IED detonated in front of Presidential Palace,” al Masdar, February 7, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“IED detonated in front of presidential palace,” 26 Sep, February 8, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
[3] “Tribesmen clash with al Houthis in Ibb,” al Watanye, February 8, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
[4] “Al-Shabaab gunmen kill Somali MP Abdullahi Qayad Barre,” BBC, February 9. Available:
[5] “Somalia: Puntland forces capture al-Shabaab militants following checkpoint attack,” Horseed Media, February 8. Available:
[6] “Kenya legislator shot dead in the capital,” Reuters, February 7. Available:
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