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: President Hadi supporters to march against southern demonstration in Aden city; AQAP releases media output statistics; President Hadi deploys military police to Taiz city; Saudi-led coalition warplanes strike Yemen’s western coast

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab clashes with Puntland security forces near Boosaaso, Bari region; Kenyan security forces respond to al Shabaab raid in Lamu County, Kenya; AMISOM vehicle runs over motorcycle near Mogadishu; al Shabaab announces death of Somali Islamist scholar

Yemen Security Brief

Supporters of Yemeni President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi will hold a counter-march in response to a demonstration advocating for southern independence in Aden city on July 7. Hadi supporters will reportedly gather in Freedom Square in Khormaksar district, eastern Aden city. The Emirati-backed Transitional Political Council for the South, which seeks the creation of a southern Yemeni polity, is organizing a demonstration in al Mualla district, southern Aden city. Former Shabwah governor Ahmed Lamlas, whom President Hadi dismissed on June 28, and Aden Security Chief Shalal Shaye’a visited the Transitional Political Council’s headquarters to express their support. Emirati-backed Yemeni security forces have deployed in Khormaksar and al Mualla and will prohibit the carrying of firearms. Demonstrators are busing into Aden from numerous southern governorates.[1] 

AQAP released a video on July 5 detailing its media output in the past year. AQAP claims to have released 64 publications, including 13 nashids (chants), 19 written publications, six audio publications, one report, and 25 videos and films.[2]

The Hadi government deployed military police to al Dhabab, western Taiz city on July 5. The security forces are tasked with protecting government facilities and facilitating the payment of government salaries. Protesters demanding their salaries rioted in the streets of Taiz city on June 27.[3]

Saudi-led coalition warplanes struck al Houthi-Saleh positions in western Yemen. Coalition warplanes struck al Houthi-Saleh positions in al Lahiyah, al Hudaydah city on July 6, destroying the port city’s Vocational Institute building. Coalition airstrikes killed seven al Houthi-Saleh fighters in al Barh, southern Taiz governorate on July 4 and July 5. Coalition strikes killed ten al Houthi-Saleh fighters in Mawza’ and Maqbanah districts, western Taiz governorate on July 4. Coalition airstrikes are intended to facilitate a northward offensive along Yemen’s western coast to al Hudaydah port.[4]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

Al Shabaab militants clashed with Puntland security forces in the Galgala Mountains outside of Boosaaso town, Bari region, northern Somalia on July 6. Al Shabaab claimed to repel an attempted raid by Puntland security forces. Al Shabaab seized Af Urur town and military base in the Galgala mountains on June 8.[5]

Kenyan Defense Forces (KDF) soldiers and Kenyan police conducted a joint search operation targeting al Shabaab militants in Lamu County, eastern Kenya on July 6. Kenyan forces launched the operation in response to a multi-hour al Shabaab attack that killed two Kenyan police officers in Pandanguo, Lamu County on July 5. The Kenyan government also reinstated a curfew in nearby Mandera County, eastern Kenya in response to the raid.[6] 

An African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) vehicle ran over a civilian motorcycle at Elasha Biyaha district outside of Mogadishu, Somalia on July 6. The AMISOM vehicle crashed along the highway connecting Mogadishu and Agofoi town in Lower Shabelle region, killing three people.[7]

Al Shabaab announced the death of Sheikh Sherif Abdel Nour, a Somali Islamist scholar on July 6. Abdel Nour taught at a military institute in Somalia and reportedly influenced al Shabaab’s ideological and military practices. He died in Mecca at the age of 76.[8]

[1] Summer Ahmed, Twitter, July 6, 2017,; “Photos: Shalal Shaye’a and Lamlas Return to Aden and Bless the Decisions of the Transitional Political Council,” Ababiil Net, July 6, 2017,; “Security Forces are Deployed near Two Sites for the July 7 Commemoration in Aden,” Aden Tomorrow, July 6, 2017,; “Weapons Prohibited in Aden and Security Measures in Anticipation of the Demonstrations Tomorrow,” Al Masdar Online, July 6, 2017,; and “Southerners are Preparing to Participate in the Million-man Memorial March in Aden,” Yemen Akhbar, July 6, 2017,
[2] AQAP releases media statistics, Telegram, July 5, 2017.
[3] “The military police deployed in the city of Taiz to implement a security plan to protect government facilities,” Al Masdar Online, July 5, 2017,; and “A military commander survives an assassination attempt and soldiers burn down tires in downtown Taiz,” Al Masdar Online, June 27, 2017,
[4] “Fourteen killed and 22 militias wounded in coalition raids west of Taiz within 24 hours,” Al Masdar Online, July 5, 2017,; “Ten al Houthi-Saleh Fighters Killed and 18 Wounded in Coalition Airstrikes in western Taiz,” Al Masdar Online, July 4, 2017,; and “The enemy airplanes launch four raids on the Vocational Institute in al Hudaydah,” Sabanews, July 6, 2017,
[5] Mogadishu Update, Twitter, July 6, 2017,; and al Shabaab claims to repel ‘government troops’ in Galgala mountains, Telegram, July 6
[6] Shmuel Yosef Agnon, “KDF, Police Launch Joint Operation To Hunt Al-Shabaab Terrorists In Lamu,” Intelligence Briefs, July 6, 2017,
[7] Garowe Online, Twitter, July 6, 2017,
[8] Sheikh Sherif Adbel Nour dies in Mecca at 76, Telegram, July 6, 2017; and “Boqashadi Sheekheena Weyn Ee Al Callaamah Sheekh Shariif Cabdinur.,” YouTube, October 11, 2016,

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