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: Saudi-led international coalition launches operation Resolute Storm in Yemen; ten countries join Saudi operation in Yemen; al Houthi militants enter Aden city, Aden; Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi flees to Oman

Horn of Africa: U.S. warns of threat of possible attack in Kampala; Kenyan police officer killed by unknown gunmen in Mombasa; Somali army and police clash in Gedo region

Yemen Security Brief

  • Saudi Arabia and an allied coalition launched an operation called “Decisive Storm” in Yemen on March 26 targeting the al Houthis. Approximately 150 fighter jets bombed al Houthi targets at al Daylami Airforce base and Sana’a International Airport early in the morning on March 26, killing an estimated 13 civilians and three reported al Houthi leaders, although casualty numbers could not be verified. Saudi aircraft also performed airstrikes on al Houthi militants near the Saudi-Yemeni border in al Minzala, Sa’ada, though no casualty reports are available from the strike.[1]
  • The Saudi Ambassador to Washington announced that an international coalition of 10 countries had participated in the Saudi operation Resolute Storm in Yemen. The coalition includes aircraft the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Morocco, Sudan, and Egypt. Egypt deployed four naval ships to secure the Gulf of Aden along with ships from Saudi Arabia. Sudan, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia have pledged ground forces for the operation, and are reportedly planning a ground assault. Pakistan is reportedly considering sending ground forces to Yemen. The White House announced that it would provide logistical and intelligence support to the operation.[2]
  • Al Houthi militants and allied-military units entered Aden city, Aden on March 26. The al Houthis have reportedly seized the districts of al Mansoura and Sheikh al Othman in northern Aden. Al Houthi militants allied with the Saleh-loyalist 39th Brigade have also reportedly captured al Badr military camp, near Aden International Airport. It is unclear whether al Houthi forces remain in control of Aden International Airport.[3]
  • President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi reportedly arrived safely at the Yemeni-Omani border on March 26 after fleeing Aden on March 25.[4]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • The United States Embassy in Kampala, Uganda issued a warning that it had information on possible terrorist threats to locations frequented by westerners on March 25. Ugandan officials identified al Shabaab as the source of the threat. Ugandan security forces have also increased security in the city.[5]
  • Unknown gunmen killed a Kenyan counter-terrorism police officer in Mombasa, Kenya on March 26. Kenyan officials fear that the killing may be in response to a crackdown on al Shabaab recruiting in the area.[6]
  • Somali National Army (SNA) and Somali police exchanged gunfire at a checkpoint in Afgoi, Lower Shabelle region on March 25. At least three people were killed in the clash. It is unclear what caused the incident.[7]

[1] “Three al Houthi leaders killed during Saudi airstrikes in Sana’a,” al Masdar, March 26, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“Eighteen dead 24 wounded during strikes in Sana’a,” al Masdar, March 26, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“Warplanes hit Houthi fighters near Saudi border,” Reuters, March 26, 2015. Available:
David D. Kirkpatrick, “Saudi jets strike Yemen in bid to halt Houthis,” New York Times, March 26, 2015. Available:
[2] “Sudan says it will take part in Yemen campaign with ground, air forces,” Reuters, March 26, 2015. Available:
“Saudi Arabia leads airstrikes against al Houthi rebels,” Reuters, March 26, 2015. Available:
“Factbox: Saudi Arabia’s coalition against the al Houthis,” Reuters, March 26, 2015. Available:
“Egypt prepares to send air, naval and ground troops to Yemen,” Barakish, March 26, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“Operation Resolute Storm aircraft contributors,” Twitter, Mohammad al Basha, March 26, 2015. Available:
“Operation Resolute Storm Naval contributors,” Twitter, Mohammad al Basha, March 26, 2015. Available:
“Egypt officials: ground operation planned in Yemen,” Big Story, March 26, 2015. Available:
[3] “Al Houthis enter Sheikh al Othman and al Mansoura, Aden,” Barakish, March 26, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“Al Houthis capture Badr military camp in Aden,” Barakish, March 26, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“Pro-Saleh forces take control of Aden airport in Aden,” al Masdar, March 25, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“Saudi Arabia leads airstrikes against Yemen’s Houthi rebels,” Reuters, March 26, 2015. Available:
[4] “President Hadi arrives at Yemeni-Omani border,” Barakish, March 26, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
[5] Elias Biryabarema, “Uganda ups security, says al Shabaab group behind U.S. warning,” Reuters, March 26. Available:
“US warns of terror attack in Kampala,” The East African, March 26. Available:
[6] “Kenya police officer shot in possible Islamist revenge attack,” Reuters, March 26. Available:
[7] “Somalia: Federal Govt forces clash at Afgoye checkpoint, 3 killed,” Bar Kulan, March 25. Available:
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