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: President Hadi freezes all GPC bank accounts; President Hadi hosts meeting with new cabinet in Sana’a; al Houthi movement supports new Yemeni government; AQAP releases video featuring prominent religious official

Horn of Africa: Suspected al Shabaab militants target Somalia security official with IED in Lower Shabelle region; suspected al Shabaab militants toss hand grenade into building in Lower Jubba region; Kenyan security forces arrest al Shabaab militants in Kenya; SNA forces clash with al Shabaab militants in Bay region; Somali security forces conduct security operation in Middle Shabelle region and Mogadishu

Yemen Security Brief

  • President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi reportedly froze all General People’s Congress (GPC) bank balances throughout Yemen on November 13 and mandated that only GPC checks signed by him can be cashed.[1]
  • President Hadi hosted a meeting with newly appointed government ministers in Sana’a on November 13, in which Hadi stressed the importance of security in the country and reiterated that he will not allow Yemen to deteriorate any further politically or economically.[2]
  • The al Houthi movement supported President Hadi’s new government in a statement made on November 13, though still opposed the appointment of some ministers within President Hadi’s cabinet.[3]
  • Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula’s (AQAP) media arm, al Malahem Media Foundation, published a video interview of AQAP religious official Nasser Bin Ali al Ansi on November 10 in which he criticized the alleged coalition between al Houthis, the Yemeni government, and the United States. Al Ansi also criticized multiple military campaigns currently being waged against various Islamist groups in Egypt, Libya, Mali, Morocco, Iraq and Syria.[4]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Suspected al Shabaab militants detonated an improvised explosive device (IED) targeting Somali National Army (SNA) General Mohamed Jimale near Barawe, Lower Shabelle region on November 13, resulting in no casualties.[5]  
  • Suspected al Shabaab militants threw a hand grenade into a building in Kismayo, Lower Jubba region, injuring five civilians on November 11. Jubbaland security forces arrested five alleged al Shabaab militants suspected of carrying out the attack on November 12.[6]
  • Kenyan security forces arrested ten al Shabaab militants, including two women, suspected of carrying out explosive attacks in Kenya. Kenyan authorities announced that the militants were detained crossing over the border from Somalia to Kenya but didn’t reveal the date or location of the arrests.[7]
  • SNA forces ambushed al Shabaab bases near Goofgaduud, Bay region on November 13, killing two militants. Al Shabaab responded hours later by attacking SNA forces at a security checkpoint in Maya Fulka, reportedly killing seven soldiers.[8]  
  • Somalia security forces conduct security operation in Jowhar, Middle Shabelle region on November 13, arresting an unknown number of suspected al Shabaab militants. Separately, Somali security forces conducted a security operation in Mogadishu following a wave of recent assassinations of government officials by suspected al Shabaab militants.[9] 

[1] “Yemeni President immovilized Congress party headed by Saleh balances,” BBC Arabic, November 13, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
“Issued President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi, directed that the freezing of all GPC balances,” Sahafah, November 13, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[2] “Hadi says he will not accept the degradation of the country’s situation and that he carries a complex responsibility for the weak state,” al Masdar, November 13, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[3] “Yemen’s Houthi group endorse new government: presidential aide,” Reuters, November 13, 2014. Available:
[4] Pro AQAP Twitter account, November 10, 2014.
[5] “Breaking News: General Gobale survives murder attempts,” Goobjoog, November 13, 2014. Available:
[6] “Hand grenade hurled into Kismayo municipal offices,” Sabahi Online, November 12, 2014. Available:
[7] Jospeh Burite, “Kenyan Authorities Arrest 10 Suspected Militants Plotting Attack,” Bloomberg, November 13, 2014. Available: 
[8] Somalia: Federal Govt forces launch raid on Al Shabaab bases in Bay,” Garowe Online, November 13, 2014. Available:
[9] “Al Shabaab suspects arrest in Jowhar,” Bar Kulan, November 13, 2014. Available:
“Government forces carry out seach operations in Mogadishu,” Goobjoog, November 13, 2014. Available:
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