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: Emirati-backed troops seize southern entrance of al Hudaydah airport; France considers supporting minesweeping operation to clear al Hudaydah port; UN Secretary General reports ballistic missiles fire from Yemen contain Iranian parts

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab ambushes military vehicle in Beledweyne town, Hiraan district; protesters in Laascaanood city, Sool region demand Somaliland’s withdrawal

Yemen Security Brief

Emirati-backed Yemeni forces seized the southern entrance to al Hudaydah airport and advanced toward the road connecting al Hudaydah city to the capital Sana’a on June 15. Al Houthi forces withdrew into the airport to defend it. Emirati-backed forces claimed to seize al Manzar village southwest of the airport before advancing toward the airport. Al Houthi forces claimed to strike Emirati-backed forces with a Tochka missile in an unspecified location along Yemen’s Red Sea coast on June 15.[1]

The French Defense Ministry announced it may conduct a minesweeping operation of al Hudaydah port after the end of military operations in al Hudaydah in a June 15 press release. An Emirati intelligence official claimed al Houthi forces mined al Hudaydah Port. An Emirati official reported that France had agreed to support a minesweeping operation but French officials denied a final decision had been made. The U.S. denied the UAE’s request to supply minesweeping, intelligence, and surveillance assets during Operation Golden Victory to seize al Hudaydah port on June 14.[2]

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres told the UN Security Council that debris from five ballistic missiles launched from Yemen into Saudi Arabia since July 2017 contained components manufactured in Iran and that the missiles had similar designs to Iranian missiles, according to a UN report released by the Associated Press on June 14. Guteress also reported that remote-controlled explosive boats seized by Bahrain and the UAE were manufactured in Iran. He emphasized that the UN has not been able to determine if either of these weapon systems were transferred before or after UN restrictions on such transfers came into effect on January 16, 2016.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

Al Shabaab militants ambushed a military vehicle traveling into Beledweyne town, Hiraan region, central Somalia on June 14. Al Shabaab militants killed two soldiers in the ambush.[4]

Puntland citizens protested in Laascaanood city, Sool region, northern Somalia on June 14. The protesters demanded Somaliland’s withdrawal from the disputed Sool region. Somaliland police arrested protesters and fired at the crowd, wounding two women.[5]

[1]“ Rocket "Tochka" hits the concentrations of invaders and mercenaries in the West Coast, "updated",” al Masirah, June 15, 2018,; Mohammed Ghobari, Mohamed Mokhashef, “Arab forces poised to take airport of Yemen's main port city,” Reuters, June 15, 2018,; and “The National Army frees the southern entrance to Hodeidah Airport,” Saba News, June 15, 2018,
View Citations

[2] John Irish, “France weighing possible minesweeping operation at Yemen port - ministry,” Reuters,; “U.S. rejected UAE request for intelligence support for Yemen operation: UAE official,” Reuters, June 14, 2018,; and “US denies UAE’s request to help defeat Houthis in west Yemen,” Al Masdar News, June 15, 2018,

[3] Edith M. Lederer, “U.N. report: Debris from missiles that hit Saudis from Iran,” Associated Press, June 15, 2018,

[4] John Snow, “Somalia: Two people killed in ambush attack in Baladweyne,” Mareeg, June 14, 2018,

[5] “Somalia: Two hurt in rally against Somaliland in Las Anod,” Garowe, June 15, 2018,


Arrow down red
Jul '18
Jun '18
May '18