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: Suspected AQAP militants clash with government soldiers in al Bayda; AQAP militants attack airport in Hadramawt; al Houthi rebels clash with Yemeni military in Amran; AQAP claims responsibility for May 23 attack on al Houthis

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab militants kill Somali parliamentarian in Mogadishu; al Shabaab militants launch mortar shells into town in Lower Shabelle region; U.S. government officials disclose extent of U.S. military presence in Somalia

Yemen Security Brief

  • Suspected al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) militants attacked a government compound and the home of a government official in Rada’a, al Bayda on July 3, resulting in the deaths of two attackers and the injuries of three Special Security Forces.[1]
  • AQAP militants attacked the Sayun Airport in Hadramawt on July 3, the same airport AQAP attacked on June 26. The Yemeni military was able to repel the attack.[2]
  • Al Houthi rebels clashed with the Yemeni military on July 3 in Hamdan after al Houthis attempted to control an army post near the Dharwan market.[3]
  • AQAP released a video claiming responsibility for the May 23 SVBIED attack on al Houthi leaders in al Ghayl, al Jawf.[4]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Al Shabaab militants ambushed a vehicle transporting several Somali parliamentarians in the Hamar Weyne district of Mogadishu on July 3. The assailants killed two of the vehicle’s occupants, including MP Mohamed Mohamud Hayd, and injured two more, including MP Abdullahi Ahmed Hussein Onka, before fleeing. Al Shabaab spokesman Sheikh Abdul Aziz Abu Musab claimed the ambush for al Shabaab and warned of future attacks against parliamentarians in Mogadishu.[5]
  • Al Shabaab militants launched mortar shells into Qoryole, Lower Shabelle region on July 2. Although the shells reportedly struck uninhabited land within the district, AMISOM forces responded by shelling the source of the mortar fire.[6]
  • Unidentified U.S. government officials disclosed the extent of the U.S. military presence in Somalia on July 2. An official reported that as many as 120 U.S. military personnel are currently stationed in the country, serving as advisors and trainers to AMISOM. Another official indicated that the U.S. intends to expand their military training role in Somalia to include engaging directly with the Somali National Army (SNA) in the upcoming fiscal year.[7]

[1] “Al Qaeda attacked the government complex in Rada,” Barakish Net, July 03, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
“Injuries from militant attack on government building and house of official in al Bayda,” al Masdar Online, July 03, 2014. Available:
[2] “Violent clashes at Sayun Airport,” Barakish Net, July 03, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[3] “Sporadic clashes in the vicinity of the city of Amran,” Barakish Net, July 03, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
“Rened clashes between the army and al Houthis in Dharwan in Hamdan,” al Masdar Online, July 03, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[4] “Video from al Qaeda shows suicide operation targeting Houthi checkpoint in northern Yemen,” al Masdar Online, July 03, 2014 [Arabic]:
[5] “Al Shabaab militants kill Somali lawmaker in Mogadishu,” Reuters, July 3, 2014. Available:
“Somalia: Gunmen kill Federal MP in Mogadishu,” Garowe Online, July 3, 2014. Available:
[6] Alshabaab Bombard Qoryoley Town Last Night,” Dalsan Radio, July 3, 2014. Available:
[7] Phil Stewart, “Exclusive: U.S. discloses secret Somalia military presence, up to 120 troops,” Reuters, July 2, 2014. Available:
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