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: Ansar al Sharia and al Houthis clash in al Bayda; aid camp in Hadramawt attacked by mortars; al Houthi members take control of office of Minister of Information

Horn of Africa: Roadside bomb targets AMISOM forces in Mogadishu; Ethiopian troops leave El Garas in Galgudud region; al Shabaab releases video showing beheading of Somali soldier

Yemen Security Brief

  • Ansar al Sharia militants clashed with al Houthi forces north of Rada’a, al Bayda in central Yemen on January 7, resulting in an unknown number of casualties.  Ansar Al Sharia later claimed credit for the attack. [1]
  • Suspected al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) militants launched 3 mortar shells at an aid camp in al Mukalla, Hadramawt with no reported casualties. No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.[2]
  • The al Houthi popular committee in Sana’a forcefully entered the office of the Minister of Information Nadia Sakkaf on the morning of January 8.  The al Houthis reportedly made copies of documents in the office and said that they will retain a presence in the office in the days to come.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • A roadside bomb targeted a convoy of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) forces in Wardhigley district, Mogadishu on January 8. Exact casualty numbers are not known but one person is confirmed dead. No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.[4]
  • Ethiopian AMISOM troops left the town of El Garas, Galgudud region on January 7. The troops are headed toward Dhusamareb, the capital of Galgudud. Officials have not commented on the departure.[5]
  • Al Shabaab released a video on January 5 depicting its November 2014 capture of Kudha Island in Lower Jubba region. The video shows al Shabaab militants fighting Interim Jubba Administration (IJA) forces and concludes with the beheading of a captured IJA soldier.[6]

[1] “Al Qaeda claims to have killed 17 al Houthi militants near Rada’a,” al Khabar al Yom, January 8, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
 “12 dead and wounded in clash between al Qaeda and al Houthi militants in Qayfa,” Barakish, January 8, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
[2] “Unidentified militants shell an military aid camp in al Mukalla with mortars,” Barakish, January 8, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
[3]“Al Houthis storm the office of the minister of information in Sana’a,” alMasdar, January 8, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
 “Al Houthis storm offices of minister of information,” Yemen Times, January 8, 2015.  Available:
Nadia Sakkaf via Twitter, January 8, 2015.  Available:
[4] “Roadside Bomb Hit AU Convoy in Mogadishu,” Shabelle News, January 8, 2015. Available:
[5] “Ethiopian Forces Vacate a Town in Central Somalia,” Shabelle News, January 8, 2015. Available:
[6] “Shabaab releases video on capturing Kudhaa Island, beheading pro-government element,” SITE, January 6, 2015. Available:
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