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: Yemeni Army launches operation in Ghayl Ba Wazir; protesters clash with security in Taiz; police arrest suspect in grenade attack; tribal gunmen retaliate in al Hudaydah; gunmen kidnap man near security checkpoint; U.N. envoy meets with Sheikh Hamid al Ahmar

Horn of Africa: Somali president meets with Kenyan and Puntland presidents in Nairobi, Kenya; Puntland security forces capture al Shabaab leader in Boosaaso, Bari region; al Shabaab militants attack farmers outside Jowhar, Middle Shabelle region; al Shabaab militants hijack bomb-making materials; Kenyan police arrests suspected al Shabaab militant in Malaba, Kenya; security officials fear major impending al Shabaab attack; officers in Baidoa, Bay region are given telecommunications equipment; Egyptian military personnel arrive in Mogadishu to help rebuild defense ministry building; officials in Baidoa, Bay region request food aid

Yemen Security Brief

  • The Yemeni Army launched an attack on al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) in Ghayl Ba Wazir, Hadramawt governorate on June 5. Militants ambushed units of the 27th Brigade, injuring eleven and killing 5, including the head of the operation. Armored units rescued the trapped soldiers and fighter planes bombed farms in the area.[1]
  • Protesters, among them women and children, cut off Gamal Abdul Nasser Street in downtown Taiz with flaming tires to protest the prosecutions of family members. When security arrived, the protesters pelted them with stones. Security fired warning shots in the air. Armed men emerged from nearby neighborhoods and engaged the security forces.[2]
  • Police arrested a suspect in last week’s failed motorcycle attack on the local branch manager of an oil company in Dhamar.[3]
  • Armed men cut off the road linking al Hudaydah with the city Haradh, Hajjah governorate, on the Saudi border. The cut came after failed negotiations between disputing tribal leaders. Armed supporters of both sides amassed, and local sources anticipated clashes in the coming hours.[4]
  • Tribal gunmen in a car kidnapped a man in his twenties from Safr Street in southern Sana’a on June 4 50 meters from a security checkpoint.[5]
  • U.N Special Envoy to Yemen Jamal Benomar met with Sheikh Hamid bin Abdullah al Ahmar to discuss the completed steps for the implementation of a political settlement according to the Gulf Initiative.[6]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud met with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and Puntland President Abdirahman Mohamed Farole in Nairobi, Kenya on June 5 to discuss the ongoing political situation in Jubbaland. Self-proclaimed President of Jubbaland Ahmed Madobe was expected to join the Nairobi talks.[7]
  • Puntland security officials claimed that they captured al Shabaab leader in Puntland Abdikafi Mohamed Ali during a raid on a hideout in Boosaaso, Bari region on June 4. Puntland authorities paraded Ali in public on June 5.[8]
  • Al Shabaab militants attacked farmers outside Jowhar, Middle Shabelle region on June 5. Five farmers were killed.[9]
  • A single source is reporting that al Shabaab militants hijacked three trucks carrying fertilizer in Qansah Oomane, Bay region on May 30 and a truck carrying scrap metal in the same village on May 31. Officials in Bay region warned that al Shabaab is most likely planning to make bombs with these materials.[10]
  • Kenyan police arrested a suspected al Shabaab militant, Alex Wamuthoni, in Malaba, Kenya on June 2. Wamuthoni was transferred from Malaba to Eldoret, Kenya for questioning.[11]
  • Security officials in Garissa, Kenya said that they have reason to believe al Shabaab is preparing to launch a large attack on the town.[12]
  • Somali police equipped officers in Baidoa, Bay region with telecommunications materials in order to better combat security threats in the region.[13]
  • Egyptian military personnel arrived in Mogadishu on June 4 to help rebuild the Somali Defense Ministry building in the city.[14]
  • Government officials in Bay region asked for increased humanitarian support, and more specifically food aid. [15]   

[1] “Yemen Army Starts Operation Against Al Qaeda in East,” Reuters, June 5, 2013. Available:“The Army Hunts Al Qaeda and Falls Into Ambushes,” Mareb Press, June 5, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[2] “Taiz: Clashes Between Security Forces and Protestors Led By Women Cut Off Gamal Abdul Nasser Street.” Mareb Press, June 4, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[3] “Suspect in Targeting House of Oil Company Manager in Dhamar Seized,” Mareb Press, June 4, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[4] “Tribal Revenge Fervor Grips Tihama Coast,” Mareb Press, June 4, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[5] “Gunmen Kidnap Young Man Near Security Checkpoint In South Capitol,” Mareb Press, June 4, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[6] “Envoy of the Secretary General of the U.N. Jamal bin Omar Meets With Sheikh Hamid al Ahmar,” Mareb Press, June 4, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[7] “Somalia Leaders to Meet in Nairobi Later Today,” Shabelle, June 5, 2013. Available:
“Ahmed Madobe Travels to Kenya,” Dhanaan Online, June 4, 2013. Available:
[8] “Somali Al Shabab Leader Abdikafi Mohamed Ali Captured,” Shabelle, June 5, 2013. Available:
[9] “Several People Killed by al Shabaab at the Outskirts of Jowhar Town,” June 5, 2013. Available:
[10] “Al Shabaab Seizes Bomb Making Material,” Bartawararka, June 4, 2013. Available:
[11] “Kenya: Terrorist Suspect Arrested in Malaba, to Be Interrogated in Eldoret Town,” Hiiraan Online, June 5, 2013. Available:
[12] “Leaders Claim al Shabaab Plotting Major Terror Attack,” Standard Media, June 4, 2013. Available:
[13] “Bay Region Police Aided with Equipment,” Bar Kulan, June 5, 2013. Available:
[14] “Egypt Military Officials Arrive in Mogadishu,” Radio Kulmiye, June 4, 2013. Available:
[15] “Bai Regional Admin Calls for Aid Assistance for the Civilian Population in the Region,” Shabelle, June 5, 2013. Available:
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