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: Suspected U.S. airstrike targets AQAP militants in Hadramawt; Saudi-led airstrikes kill estimated 90 people in Sana’a; popular resistance fighters retake town in Shabwah

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab attacks security forces in Bay region; security forces arrest suspects in Mogadishu

Yemen Security Brief

  • A suspected U.S. airstrike targeted al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) militants in the presidential palace in al Mukalla, Hadramawt, on May 11. Unverified reports claim that AQAP leader Mamoun al Hatem was killed in the strike. AQAP has yet to release a statement confirming Hatem’s death.[1]
  • Saudi-led airstrikes targeted a rocket base in the capital, Sana’a, on May 11. The strikes killed 90 people and wounded an estimated 300, though these reports have not been independently verified.[2]
  • Popular resistance fighters reportedly regained control of al Masenah, Shabwah, from al Houthi militants on May 11.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Al Shabaab militants attacked Somali and Ethiopian forces in Qansax Dhere, Bay region, on May 11. Both sides claimed victory, with a government official alleging the capture of wounded militants, and al Shabaab claiming to have overrun the security forces’ defenses.[4]
  • Somali security forces arrested several suspects in a security operation in Mogadishu on May 12. An official claimed that a suspected al Shabaab member was among the detainees and that security forces would conduct similar operations regularly.[5]

[1] “U.S. raid bombed the presidential palace in al Mukalla,” Barakish, May 11, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“The killing of AQAP leader Mamoun al Hatem in U.S. airstrike in al Mukalla,” Barakish, May 12, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
[2] “Arab airstrike on Yemeni capital on Monday killed 90,” Reuters, May 12, 2015. Available:
“Ninety dead and 300 wounded by Saudi aggression in Sana’a,” 26sep, May 12, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
[3] “Popular resistance regains control of Masenah, Shabwah,” Arabic People, May 12, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
“Popular resistance makes gains in Shabwah,” Yemen Akhbar, May 12, 2015 [Arabic]. Available:
[4] “Somali islamic militia attack Qansax Dheere city at midnight,” Mareeg, May 11. Available:
[5] “Several people arrested in Mogadishu,” Bar Kulan, May 12. Available:
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