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: Suicide bomb attack in Sa’ada, Sa’ada governorate; government releases al Houthi prisoners in exchange for National Dialogue participation; police find bomb in taxi; five years of tribal war end in Qayfa, al Bayda; special forces arrest nine

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab launches complex attack on United Nations compound in Mogadishu; Somali, AMISOM and UN officials condemn attack on UN compound in Mogadishu; Somali and AMISOM troops clash with al Shabaab fighters outside Beledweyne, Hiraan region; unknown gunmen kill Somali soldier in Hodan district, Mogadishu; al Shabaab displays two defected Somali soldiers; U.S. officials say NSA surveillance program helped convict four al Shabaab fundraisers in San Diego, California; Somaliland government denies plane ability to land in its airspace

Yemen Security Brief

  • A suicide bomber on a motorcycle killed three people and wounded eight in a market in Sa'ada city, Sa’ada governorate.[1]
  • Al Houthis announced that they reached a settlement to not boycott the National Dialogue Conference(NDC) in exchange for the release of prisoners arrested during demonstrations at the National Security Bureau last week.[2]
  • The Interior Ministry said that experts had found and removed a two kilogram bomb in a taxi near 70th Street in Sana'a on June 18.[3]
  • The al Dhahab and al Bani Ali tribes in the Qayfa area of al Bayda governorate reached an agreement to end five years of war. The dispute killed 26 people and wounded 67.[4]
  • Special counter-terrorism forces seized nine suspects in al Hawta city, Lahij governorate.[5]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Al Shabaab launched a complex attack on the United Nations headquarters in Mogadishu on June 19. A suicide car bomb detonated at the gates, and militants wearing suicide vests stormed the compound following the initial explosion. Four UN workers, four Somali guards and seven militants were killed in the attack. Al Shabaab posted several messages to its Twitter account claiming the assault. The UN facility is now under control of African Union forces.[6]
  • Somali, African Union and United Nations officials condemned the attack on the UN compound in Mogadishu on June 19.[7]
  • Somali and AMISOM troops clashed with al Shabaab outside Beledweyne, Hiraan region on June 18. The cause of the conflict and casualties from it are not known.[8]
  • Unknown gunmen killed a Somali soldier in Hodan district, Mogadishu on June 17. The shooters were able to flee the scene and the reason for the attack is unknown.[9]
  • Al Shabaab senior official in the Lower Shabelle region, Mohamed Abu Abdalla, said that two Somali soldiers defected and joined al Shabaab militants in the region.[10]
  • United States government officials said in their testimony to the House Intelligence Committee on June 18 that the NSA surveillance program PRISM led to the arrest and conviction of four al Shabaab fundraisers in San Diego, California in February 2010.[11]
  • The Somaliland government denied landing privileges to a plane because it had been cleared by flight controllers in Mogadishu and had not consulted with Somaliland’s Aviation Ministry.[12]    

[1] “Three People Killed in Northern Yemen Bombing: Official,” Reuters, June 19, 2013. Available:
[2] “Houthi Prisoners Released,” Yemen Observer, June 17, 2013. Available:
[3] “Interior: IED Found in Taxi Next To Center in Sana'a,” Al Masdar Online, June 18, 2013 [Arabic]. Available: “Houthi Prisoners Released,” Yemen Observer, June 17, 2013. Available:
[4] “Dhamar.. Tribal Mediation Succeeds in Stopping Bloodshed Between al Dhahab and al Bani Ali After Five Years of War,” Mareb Press, June 18, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[5] “Counter Terrorism Seizes Nine Wanted People In Lahij,” 26 Sep, June 18, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[6] “At Least 14 Killed in Attack on U.N. Headquarters in Somalia,” CNN, June 19, 2013. Available:
“Gun Battle at UN Compound in Mogadishu Ends,” Al Jazeera, June 19, 2013. Available:
“African Troops Say Secure U.N. Base in Somalia after Attack,” Reuters, June 19, 2013. Available:
@HSMPress1, “Al Shabaab Tweet on UN Compound Attack,” Twitter, June 19, 2013. Available:
[7] “Somalia: AMISOM Condemns Attack on UNCC Compound in Mogadishu,” Raxanreeb, June 19, 2013. Available:
“Somalia: Government Condemns Senseless Attack on UN,” Raxanreeb, June 19, 2013. Available:
“Gun Battle at UN Compound in Mogadishu Ends,” Al Jazeera, June 19, 2013. Available:
[8] “Heavy Fighting in Beledweyne Hiraan Region of Somalia,” June 19, 2013. Available:
[9] “Government Soldier Killed in Mogadishu,” Bar Kulan, June 19, 2013. Available:
[10] “Shabaab Says it Has Received Two Somali Government Soldiers Surrendered to Them,” Kulmiye News, June 18, 2013. Available:
[11] “NSA Surveillance Used in Somali Terrorism Cases,” UT San Diego, June 18, 2013. Available:
[12] “Ministry of Aviation Has for the First Time Bars a Plane from Landing,” Somaliland Press, June 18, 2013. Available:
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