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: Four killed in suspected al Qaeda attack on police and intelligence headquarters in Zinjibar; President Saleh dismisses talk of “seventh war” in north; Qatar agrees to continue mediation efforts between the government and al Houthi rebels; U.S. transfers Guantanamo prisoner to Yemen, second kept in detention on al Qaeda suspicions

Horn of Africa: Uganda minister confirms suicide bomb attack in Ethiopian restaurant; Uganda opposition: more AU members must send troops to Somalia; TFG appoints new Mogadishu mayor; AMISOM troops clash with al Shabaab in Mogadishu; al Shabaab takes Hiraan region village from Ahlu Sunna wa al Jama’a; Kenya PM says weapon smuggling increasing

Yemen Security Brief  

  • 20 suspected al Qaeda gunmen executed a coordinated attack on the intelligence and police headquarters in the town of Zinjibar in Abyan province Wednesday, initiating clashes that killed two security officers and two militants.  The attack involved multiple vehicles, motorcycles, and a sniper, according to reports.  Seven suspects were arrested in the incident, which follows a similar attack last month against the security headquarters in Aden.[1]
  • President Saleh stressed on Tuesday that there were no indications a seventh war would break out between the government and al Houthi rebels in the north.[2]
  • Qatar agreed Tuesday to continue its mediation of the conflict between the Yemeni government and northern al Houthi rebels after a meeting between President Saleh and Qatari Emir Hamad bin Khalifa.[3]
  • U.S. authorities have transferred a Yemeni Guantanamo detainee, Mohammed Odaini, back to his homeland after a court ruled he had no ties to al Qaeda, according to U.S. officials.  However, a second Yemeni prisoner, Mohammed al Adahi, was ordered to remain in detention Tuesday after an American appeals court found that he was likely part of al Qaeda, reversing a lower court finding that he had no connection to the group.[4]
Horn of Africa Security Brief  
  • A Ugandan state minister confirmed that at least one of the two attacks in Kampala, the blast at an Ethiopian restaurant, was executed by a suicide bomber.[5]
  • Uganda’s opposition leader said that the country should send an ultimatum to the African Union saying that if other member states do not send military assistance to Somalia, then Uganda would withdraw its troops.[6]
  • The TFG appointed a new mayor of Mogadishu on Tuesday, who said his first goal would be to recapture all of the city’s 16 districts, six of which fall under TFG control. Mohamed Ahmed Tarzan was formerly a member of the Somali parliament and, before that, the ARS.[7]
  • AMISOM troops and al Shabaab militants clashed in Mogadishu on Wednesday, killing two civilians and wounding five others. Al Shabaab sparked the skirmish by attacking a Burundian base.[8]
  • Ahlu Sunna wa al Jama’a soldiers clashed with al Shabaab militants in Mahas village in Hiraan region Monday. Local reports say al Shabaab took control of the contested areas as a result of the battle.[9]
  • Kenya PM Raila Odinga said Somalia’s anarchic state is allowing an increase in weapon and bomb smuggling into Kenya.[10]

[1] “Gunmen Attack Yemen Security Offices, al Qaeda Blamed,” MSNBC News, July 14, 2010.  Available:
[2] “No Seventh War in Yemen’s North: President,” AFP, July 13, 2010.  Available:
[3] “Yemen and Qatar Agree to Activate Mediation Between Government and Houthi Group,” Yemen Post, July 13, 2010.  Available:
[4] “U.S. Transfers Gitmo Prisoner to Yemen,” AP, July 13, 2010.  Available: “Reversal Upholds Detention of Yemeni at Guantanamo,” New York Times, July 13, 2010.  Available:
[5] “Uganda: Suicide Bomber Identified in Blasts, U.S. Warns of Al-Qaeda,” Radio France Internationale, July 14, 2010. Available:
[6] “Uganda: Opposition Demands Help in Somalia,” New Vision, July 13, 2010. Available:
[7] “Somalia govt appoints new mayor of Mogadishu,” Garowe, July 13, 2010. Available: “New governor: we would take over whole districts out of Somali government,s hands soon,“ Mareeg, July 14, 2010. Available:
[8] “Clash kills two, wounds five others in Mogadishu,” Mareeg, July 14, 2010. Available:
[9] “Al-shabab and traditional Somali Islamic militia clash near Hiran region,” Mareeg, July 13, 2010 Available:
[10] “Kenya: Kenyan PM worried over bomb smuggling,” PanAfrican News Agency, July 14, 2010. Available:
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