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 Dhale security director escapes assassination by southern secessionist; Saleh says military will stop separatists

Horn of Africa: Somali president reverses decision, keeps PM; Djibouti president warns of Somalia collapse, asks for international assistance to TFG; militants kill two civilians in Mogadishu mortar attacks; al Shabaab shuts down UK aid centers; Puntland raid nets twelve pirates

Yemen Security Brief

  • The Security Director of al Dhale province, Ghazi Ahmed Ali, escaped an assassination attempt by two gunmen from the Southern Movement Tuesday. Security forces wounded and captured one of the assailants, but the other escaped.[1]
  • President Saleh said that the military will prevent separatists from carrying out their plans.  “We will not let criminals, bandits and callers for separation achieve their goals,” he said during a military camp visit in Taiz province.[2]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Somali President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed reversed his decision to replace Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Sharmarke, backing down from a standoff that threatened government stability.[3]
  • Djibouti President Ismail Omar Guelleh called on the international community to act fast to reinforce the TFG in an appearance before the UN Security Council. He warned that Somalia is quickly collapsing in the face of a growing insurgency, which could destabilize the entire Horn of Africa.[4]
  • Militants killed two civilians and wounded several others after firing mortars in Mogadishu’s Hamarweyne district.[5]
  • Al Shabaab militants stormed the Baidoa and Wajid offices of a British aid NGO, World Vision, and forced them to close Tuesday.[6]
  • Puntland security forces have now captured twelve pirates in an operation launched earlier this week. Initial reports had said the sting netted five pirates, including wanted leader Abdirizaq Abdullahi Boyah.[7]

[1] “Security director escapes assassination,” Yemen Observer, May 19, 2010. Available:
[2] “We will not let bandits, separatists achieve their goals: Saleh says,” Saba Net, May 19, 2010.  Available:
[3] “Somali president reverses decision to fire PM,” AP, May 20, 2010. Available:
[4] “Djibouti warns of Somalia ‘disintegration,’” News 24, May 20, 2010. Available:
[5] “Somalia: Mortar Shelling kills two civilians,” Mareeg, May 20, 2010. Available:
[6] Somalia’s Shabaab bans UK aid,” News 24, May 18, 2010. Available:
[7] “Pirate on US wanted list captured in Somalia,” AP, May 20, 2010. Available: 
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