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: Yemeni security forces strengthen security measures around Western embassies and important government and military buildings in Yemen; Yemeni President Hadi visits Amran; tribesmen clash with Yemeni military in Ma’rib

Horn of Africa: Kenyan Air Force jets conduct airstrike on al Shabaab base in Middle Jubba region; al Shabaab militants attack Somali security forces in Mogadishu and Lower Jubba region; unidentified gunmen kill prominent Somali parliamentarian in Mogadishu; senior al Shabaab official condemns Israeli action in Gaza

Yemen Security Brief

  • Anonymous Yemeni security sources reported that Yemeni security forces strengthened their security measures around Western embassies in Sana’a and important government and military buildings in other governorates on July 22, in response to recent reports of an upcoming al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) plot in Yemen.[1]
  • Yemeni President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi visited Amran on July 23 and met with the governor, the Yemeni 9th Brigade commander, and several local council members to discuss development and security opportunities in Amran.[2]
  • Al Dammaj tribesmen clashed with the Yemeni 312th Brigade in the Hibab area of Sirwah, Ma’rib on July 23, killing two soldiers and two tribesmen. The clashes erupted when the tribesmen prevented a team of engineers from repairing a damaged oil pipeline in Ma’rib.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Kenyan Air Force jets conducted an airstrike on an al Shabaab base near Jilib, Middle Jubba region on July 22. Al Shabaab militants reportedly fired at the low-flying jets, limiting the airstrike’s effectiveness. Local sources indicate that the airstrike killed at least one person, though the victim’s affiliation is unknown.[4]
  • Al Shabaab militants attacked an African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and Somali National Army (SNA) base in the Heliwa district of Mogadishu on July 22. AMISOM and SNA forces repelled the attack, reportedly capturing several al Shabaab militants. Separately, al Shabaab militants attacked a Jubbaland security forces base in Kismayo, Lower Jubba over the night of July 22.  At least four combatants were injured in the confrontation, including one al Shabaab militant. Finally, al Shabaab militants clashed with a local militia near Bulo-Burde, Hiraan region on July 23. The fighting, which killed at least four al Shabaab militants, broke out after locals refused to pay an al Shabaab tax.[5]
  • Unidentified gunmen ambushed and killed a prominent Somali parliamentarian and folk singer, Saado Ali Warsame, and her driver in the Hodan district of Mogadishu on July 23. Separately, unidentified gunmen also killed two SNA soldiers in the Hodan district on July 23. No group has yet claimed responsibility for either attack.[6]
  • A senior al Shabaab official, identified as Hassan Mohamud Takar, condemned, in a July 22 statement, Israel’s military action against the Palestinians in Gaza. Takar criticized the idleness of Arab countries during the conflict and insisted that jihadists in Lebanon and Syria could defeat the Israelis.[7]

[1] “Security forces reinforce their presence around Western embassies in Sana’a,” al Watanye, July 22, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[2] “President of the Republic visits Amran and inspects the conditions of citizens and efforts to normalize the situation in the governorate,” Saba Net, July 23, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[3] “Five soldiers and two tribesmen killed in clashes in Sirwah, Ma’rib,” Barakish Net, July 23, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
“Two soldiers and two oil pipeline bombers killed in military campaign conducted this morning in Ma’rib,” al Masdar, July 23, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[4] “Somalia: Kenya warplanes target Al Shabaab hideouts again,” Garowe Online, July 22, 2014. Available:
“SOMALIA: Details emerge from Jilib airstrike targeted to Al Shabaab base,” RBC Radio, July 23, 2014. Available:
[5] “Somalia: fierce clashes occur in Mogadishu,” Shabelle News, July 23, 2014. Available:
“Three injured in overnight clashes in Kismayo,” Bar Kulan, July 23, 2014. Available:
“4 Al Shabaab fighters killed near Bulo-burte town, Hiran region,” Bar Kulan, July 23, 2014. Available:
[6] “Somali lawmaker, also a popular singer, killed in drive-by shooting in the capital,” AP, July 23, 2014. Available:
“Somalia: Two Gov’t soldiers shot dead in Mogadishu,” Shabelle News, July 23, 2014. Available:
[7] “Alshabaab Condemns Israel Following Gaza Attack,” Dalsan Radio, July 22, 2014. Available:
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