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: Suicide attack targets Sana’a police academy; Yemeni security forces and Southern Movement supporters clash in Aden; security services re-arrest two al Hudaydah prison escapees

Horn of Africa: AMISOM and TFG launch operation on al Shabaab training camp 40 km west of Mogadishu; TFG forces seize weapons and materials from al Shabaab in Elasha Biyaha; Somali Prime Minister and UN Political Office for Somalia head meet with Somali elders in Mogadishu; al Shabaab releases four communiqués claiming several attacks between June 24 and 27

Yemen Security Brief

  • Yemeni police cadets were killed when a suicide bomber attacked the Police Academy in Sana’a. The Yemeni Interior Ministry reported that at least nine cadets were killed in the attack. No one has claimed responsibility for the attack.[1]
  • Clashes between Yemeni security forces and armed civilians in al Mansoura district in Aden killed a Southern Movement leader, Sharaf Mahfooz, and injured four others people. Yemeni security forces moved armored vehicles across the roads leading out of the district.[2]
  • The Yemeni Defense Ministry reported that Yemeni security services recaptured two of the five al Qaeda-linked militants who had escaped from al Hudaydah prison last month on July 10. They were named as Naser Ismail Ahmed Mutahar and Haitham Hasan Afifi. Mutahar was allegedly involved in the September 2008 attack on the U.S. Embassy in Sana’a. Local authorities offered a reward for information leading to the arrest of the remaining three escapees.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) forces and Transitional Federal Government (TFG) soldiers launched an operation on an al Shabaab training camp in Lanta-Buro, 40 kilometers west of Mogadishu. In an AMISOM press release, AMISOM Force Commander Lt. Gen. Andrew Gutti said, “this operation will not only bring relief to the population in that particular area, but will also help create a safer environment in the capital.”[4]
  • TFG forces reportedly seized weapons and materials from al Shabaab in Elasha Biyaha, situated between Mogadishu and Afgoi. The items included: parts of anti-aircraft missiles, bomb-making materials, various kinds of ammunition, and military fatigues. Additionally, TFG soldiers allegedly paraded five recently captured militants in Elasha Biyaha.[5]
  • Somali Prime Minister Abdiweli Mohamed Ali and UN Political Office for Somalia (UNPOS) head Augustine Mahiga reportedly met with Somali elders in Mogadishu on July 10. Ali and Mahiga urged the elders to select National Constituent Assembly (NCA) members before August 20. A group of 135 elders are expected to select 825 representatives by mid-July who will then elect the Somali parliament and president on August 20.[6]
  • Al Shabaab released four communiqués through its media arm al Kata’ib Media Foundation on jihadist forums on July 7 detailing attacks between June 24 and 27. Most notably, al Shabaab claimed an attack on a Kenyan convoy in Haluqa, Kenya that killed 15 soldiers on June 26. Also, al Shabaab claimed an ambush that killed 30 Ethiopian soldiers in Baidoa in Bay region on June 27.[7]     

[1] Ahmed Al Haj, “Suicide Attack on Police Kills 6,” AP, July 11, 2012. Available:
“High Number of Student Police Martyrs,” Yemeni Ministry of Interior, July 11, 2012. Available:
[2] “Leader of Southern Movement Killed in Aden,” Yemen Post, July 11, 2012. Available:
“Southern Separatists Killed, Four Wounded in Yemen,” AFP, July 11, 2012. Available:
[3] “Yemen Detains 2 Fugitive Qaeda-linked Militants,” Reuters, July 10, 2012. Available:
“Yemen Arrests al Qaeda Members Who Escaped Prison,” Yemen Post, July 10, 2012. Available:
Ahmed Al Haj, “Suicide Attack On Police Cadets Kills 6,” Associated Press, July 11, 2012. Available:
[4] “AMISOM Moves to Capture Al-Shabaab Training Camp,” AMISOM, July 11, 2012. Available:
“AU, Somali Forces Target al-Shabab Training Camp,” Voice of America, July 11, 2012. Available:
[5] “TFG Impounds Deadly Weapons in Elasha Biyaha,” Bar Kulan, July 11, 2012. Available:
[6] “PM, UN Representative Meet with Somali Elders in Mogadishu,” Shabelle Media Network, July 10, 2012. Available:
[7] “Shabaab Claims Large Number of Enemy Deaths in Several Attacks,” SITE Intelligence Group, July 10, 2012. Available at SITE.
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