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: Al Houthi movement breaks humanitarian ceasefire; Operation Golden
Arrow forces clash with al Houthi forces at al Anad Airbase; southern popular resistance forces capture Abdul Khaliq al Houthi
Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab detonates SVBIED at Mogadishu hotel; al Shabaab spokesman warns of future attacks; al Shabaab militants assassinate Somali government official and MP
Yemen Security Brief
- The al Houthi movement appears to have rejected a five-day humanitarian ceasefire proposed by Saudi Arabia.. The ceasefire was intended to go into effect at approximately 11:59 (GMT) on July 26 but quickly dissolved as the al Houthi movement launched an attack on the al Tawal region of the Saudi-Yemeni border invoking retaliation from Saudi Arabian forces. The al Houthi movement stated that it was never informed of a humanitarian ceasefire by the UN and will not negotiate until a ceasefire is confirmed and backed by the UN.
- Members of the southern popular resistance movement, in conjunction with Saudi Arabian-led Operation Golden Arrow forces, began to fight against the al Houthi movement for control of al Anad Airbase on July 26. The airbase is located within the governorate of Lahij and serves as a key strategic point leading to the city of Aden.
- Southern popular resistance forces captured senior al Houthi commander Abdul Khaliq al Houthi, the brother of al Houthi leader Abdul Malik al Houthi, on July 25. Abdul Khaliq al Houthi is believed to have played a pivotal role in the al Houthis’ September seizure of Sana’a and is currently blacklisted by the UN Security Council for threatening Yemen's peace and stability and obstructing political reform efforts.
Horn of Africa Security Brief
- Al Shabaab claimed responsibility for a suicide vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (SVBIED) detonated at the gate of the Jazeera Palace Hotel in Mogadishu on July 26. The blast killed thirteen. The Jazeera Palace Hotel is home to the Kenyan, Chinese, Qatari, Egyptian, and Emirati missions, and a Chinese official is believed to be among the dead. Al Shabaab previously attacked the hotel, which is located near Aden Adde International Airport, in September 2012.
- Al Shabaab’s spokesman Ali Dheere released a statement following the July 26 attack on the Jazeera Palace Hotel warning of future attacks by the group on government bases and hotels housing government offices in Mogadishu. Dheere also warned Mogadishu residents to avoid these areas so they aren’t harmed during the attacks.
- Al Shabaab militants killed a member of the Somali Prime Minister’s office, as well as Somali MP Abdullahi Hussein Mohamed and his bodyguard, in separate drive-by shootings in Mogadishu on July 25. MP Hussein Mohamed’s death is believed to be linked to an anti-terrorism bill that was passed by the Somali Parliament earlier that day.