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: Secretary of State Pompeo meets with UN Special Envoy to Yemen in Washington; al Houthi movement claims to kill 45 Saudi soldiers in missile attack

Horn of Africa: SNA conducts operation against al Shabaab in Bakool region; Ethiopia to host AFRICOM exercise; new Russian ambassador to Somalia arrives in Mogadishu; UN Secretary General speaks at African counterterrorism conference

Yemen Security Brief

US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo met with UN Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths in Washington, DC on June 10. Secretary Pompeo raised concerns about ongoing al Houthi attacks against Saudi Arabia. Griffiths emphasized the need to keep Yemen out of a regional conflict in the Persian Gulf.[1]

The al Houthi movement claimed to launch a Badr-F missile at a Saudi military camp in Najran province in southwestern Saudi Arabia on June 10. Al Houthi military spokesman Yahya Sarea claimed that the strike killed 45 Saudi soldiers.[2]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

Somali National Army (SNA) forces captured two areas from al Shabaab near Huddur town, the capital of Bakool region in southern Somalia, on June 10.[3]

Ethiopia announced that it will host Justified Accord, an annual military exercise organized by US Africa Command (AFRICOM), in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, from July 15 to July 31. The exercise is intended to improve the capacity of African forces participating in the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).[4]

The newly appointed Russian ambassador to Somalia, Mikhail Golovanov, arrived in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, on July 10. Golovanov is the first Russian ambassador to Somalia in over 25 years.[5]

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres spoke at a UN-organized conference on counterterrorism in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, on July 10. Guterres called for "sufficient, predictable and sustainable financial support" for counterterrorism efforts in Africa.[6]

Visit our Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya story streams.  

[1] “Secretary Pompeo’s Meeting with UN Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Yemen Martin Griffiths,” U.S. Department of State, July 10, 2019,; and Stephen Snyder, “UN Envoy to US: We need to keep Yemen out of a potential regional conflict,” PRI, July 10, 2019.

[2] “Yemeni missile strike kills dozens of Saudi mercenaries in kingdom’s Najran.” Press TV, July 10, 2019,

[3] “Somali troops retake small villages from al Shabaab militants,” Radio Shabelle, July 10, 2019,

[4] “US, Ethiopia to conduct joint military exercise,” Addis Standard, July 10, 2019,

[5] “Russia sends Ambassador to Somalia after nearly 3 decades,” Garowe, July 11, 2019,

[6] “Terrorism ‘spreading and destabilizing’ entire regions, Guterres warns States, at Key Kenya conference,” UN News, July 10, 2019,; and “UN terrorism meeting kicks off in Kenya,” Mareeg, July 10, 2019,; and Antonio Guterres, Twitter, July 10, 2019,

View Citations
Arrow down red
Aug '19
Jul '19
Jun '19