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: Armed al Houthi rebels kill a man and kidnap another in separate incidents in Sa’ada; Yemeni official meets with U.S. senator and USAID official to review Yemen’s transitional phase and discuss future assistance programs

Horn of Africa: Two roadside bombs kill four TFG soldiers in Baidoa; AMISOM troops and al Shabaab clash in Lower Jubba region; landmine explosion delays constitution meeting in Mogadishu; UK stations 10 military advisors at AMISOM headquarters

Yemen Security Brief

  • Local sources reported that a group of armed al Houthi rebels kidnapped a 20-year-old man, Daif Allah al Badri, in Saqain district in Sa’ada on July 26. Badri returned a day earlier from Sana’a’s Tagheer (Change) Square, where Yemen’s youth movement staged protests over the course of 2011. In a separate incident, the al Houthis shot and killed a man while attempting to detain him in Saqain district on July 25, according to residents. The man locked himself in his room and the al Houthi gunmen shot at him through his window. He was wounded by two bullets and bled to death.[1]
  • Chargé d’Affaires of the Yemeni embassy in Washington Adel al Suneini and U.S. Senator Ben Nelson (D-NE) met to review Yemen’s transitional progress on July 26.  Suneini also met with Mara Radman, a senior U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) official, to further discuss financial assistance to address Yemen’s ongoing humanitarian crisis.[2]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Two roadside bombs detonated and killed four Transitional Federal Government (TFG) soldiers and injured an unspecified number of civilians at a checkpoint in Baidoa in Bay region. No one has claimed responsibility for the attack.[3]
  • Al Shabaab ambushed a TFG, African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), and Kenyan convoy traveling from Kolbio in Lower Jubba region to Bardhere in Gedo region on July 26. Local residents reported that both sides used heavy artillery. There are no reports on the number of casualties.[4]
  • Somalia’s National Constituent Assembly (NCA) halted when a landmine exploded inside the meeting venue at General Mohamed Gelle Kahiye police academy in Mogadishu. According to the Minister of Constitution and Reconciliation Abdirahman Hosh Jibri, mortar rounds targeted the meeting hall where the constitutional meeting convened for the third day. A member of the NCA told RBC Radio they were told to leave after arriving to the venue. The meeting is set to reconvene on July 28.[5]
  • A team of 10 British military advisors arrived and are now stationed at the African Union headquarters in Mogadishu to help with planning, communication, and medical support.[6]     

[1] “Local Sources: Armed Houthis Kidnap a Boy in Sa’ada,” Al Masdar Online, July 27, 2012. Available:
[2] “Yemen, U.S. Talk on Join Cooperation Fields,” SABA Net, July 26, 2012. Available:
[3] “Roadside Bomb Blasts in Somalia Kills 4 Soldiers,” Shabelle Media Network, July 27, 2012. Available:
[4] “Heavy Fighting in Lower Jubba Region,” Garowe Online, July 26, 2012. Available:
[5] “Somalia’s National Constituent Assembly Postponed Due to Shelling,” Shabelle Media Network, July 27, 2012. Available:
“Constitution Meeting Closed Down After Explosion Hit Meeting Venue,” Raxanreeb, July 27, 2012. Available:
[6] “UK Troops in Somalia ‘Aiding Union Force,’” BBC, July 26, 2012. Available:
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