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: Al Houthi missile targets Hadi government-aligned forces in Hajjah governorate; al Houthi forces allegedly fire on Hadi government representatives to Redeployment Coordination Committee in al Hudaydah city; UN Security Council permanent members urge Yemeni parties to implement Stockholm Agreement

Horn of Africa: French President Macron travels to Djibouti, Ethiopia, and Kenya; suspected al Shabaab militants detonate IED in Bay region

Yemen Security Brief

Al Houthi forces launched a Badr P1 missile targeting forces aligned with the Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi government in western Hiran district in Hajjah governorate in northwestern Yemen on March 12, according to the al Houthi defense ministry news outlet. The al Houthi movement is mobilizing forces to attack Hiran district from Kushar district, according to pro-Hadi media.[1]

Al Houthi forces fired Katyusha rockets at the headquarters of the Hadi government team of the Redeployment Coordination Committee (RCC) in al Hudaydah city on March 12, according to pro-Hadi media. The RCC is responsible for coordinating and implementing the demilitarization of al Hudaydah governorate under the Stockholm Agreement. Hadi government Minister of Information Muammar al Iryan stated that al Houthi forces targeted the team during meetings to prepare for implementing the first phase the redeployment of forces from al Hudaydah. Al Houthi media denied the attack on the Hadi government team.[2]

The ambassadors of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council urged both parties in the Yemen conflict to implement the Stockholm Agreement in a joint statement on March 12.  UN Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths will brief the Security Council on the obstacles to implementing the first phase the redeployment of forces from al Hudaydah according to pro-Saudi media.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

French President Emmanuel Macron embarked on a four-day tour of East Africa on March 11 to Djibouti, Ethiopia, and Kenya. Macron arrived in Djibouti on March 11 and met with President Ismaïl Omar Guelleh. Macron then met with Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and the African Union (AU) Commission chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat in Ethiopia on March 12. Macron and Abiy Ahmed agreed on the first military cooperation accord between France and Ethiopia, which includes French assistance to reestablish an Ethiopian navy. Macron met with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta in Kenya’s capital Nairobi, becoming the first French president to visit Kenya, on March 13. French government officials cited China’s growing influence in the region as a factor to Macron’s trip to East Africa. Macron returns to France on March 14.[4]

Suspected al Shabaab militants detonated an improvised explosive device (IED) in an animal market in Gofgudud Burey village, 30 kilometers west of Baidoa city in Bay region in central Somalia, on March 13. The explosion injured at least six people.[5]

[1] “Houthi militia launches a ballistic missile on Hiran and mobilizes huge forces to control it,” Barakish, March 13, 2019,; and “Rocket Badr P1 ballistic missile targets gathering of the mercenaries west of Hiran,” 26 Sep Net, March 13, 2019,

[2] “Rocket Badr P1 ballistic  missile targets gathering of the mercenaries west of Hiran,” 26 Sep Net, March 13, 2019,; “Al Iryani: Houthi missiles targeted the meeting of the redeployment committee in Hodeidah,” 7adramout, March 13, 2019,; and “Houthi targeting the headquarters of the Commission of the redeployment in Hodeidah,” Youm 8, March 13, 2019,

[3] “Security Council members urge Yemen parties to implement peace deal,” Reuters, March 13, 2019,; and “UN Envoy to brief Security Council on obstacles hindering Hodeidah deal,” Asharq al Awsat, March 13, 2019,

[4] Daniel Mumbere, “Macron in Eastern Africa: reinforcing France-AU partnerships,” Africa News, March 12, 2019,; Anthony Lattier, “Emmanuel Macron in Nairobi: first visit of a French president to Kenya,” RFI, March 13, 2019,;

“Ethiopia, France Sign Military, Navy Deal, Turn 'New Page' in Ties,” Reuters, March 12, 2019,; and “Macron embarks on whirlwind East Africa tour,” France24, March 11, 2019,

[5] “At least six injured as explosion hits market in Somalia,” Mareeg, March 13, 2019,; and Harun Maruf, Twitter, March 13, 2019,

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