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: Yemeni political parties agree to form new government; AQAP militants attack government buildings in al Hudaydah; unidentified assailants assassinate Union of Popular Forces party official in Sana’a; US requests the UNSC to exercise sanctions against former Yemeni President Saleh; Yemeni soldiers protest with Southern Movement supporters in Aden; unidentified airstrike kills two Ansar al Sharia militants in al Bayda

Horn of Africa: Suspected Al Shabaab militants detonate car bomb in Mogadishu; unidentified militants conduct separate attacks on Kenyan military barracks in Kenya’s Coast Province; unidentified gunmen kill 24 people during an ambush in Kenya’s Rift Valley Province; roadside IED detonates near AMISOM convoy in Mogadishu; unidentified assailants kill civilians during multiple attacks in Mogadishu

Yemen Security Brief

  • Yemen’s main political parties, including the al Islah Party and the al Houthis, signed an agreement in Sana’a on November 1 allowing President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi and Prime Minister Khaled Mahfoodh Abdulla Bahah to form a new government. Prime Minister Bahah will select new ministers for the government with consultation from President Hadi. No timeframe of completion was made in the announcement.[1]
  • Unidentified assailants assassinated prominent Yemeni politician and Secretary General of Yemen’s Union of Popular Forces political party, Mohammed Abdul Malik al Mutawakil, on al Adl Street in Sana’a on November 2. President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi condemned the assassination on November 3, and promised to hold the assailants accountable.[2]
  • Suspected al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) militants attacked the government security headquarters in Jabal Ras, al Hudaydah on November 1, killing 20 soldiers and capturing 15 more. Three AQAP militants were also killed in the attack. Al Houthi militants later secured Jabal Ras on November 3.[3]
  • The United States submitted a formal request to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) on October 31 to exercise targeted sanctions against Yemen’s former President, Ali Abdullah Saleh, and two al Houthi leaders for interfering in the political process.[4]
  • Yemeni soldiers and police officers protested alongside Southern Movement supporters in Khormaksar, Aden on November 3, in support of political separation from Sana’a.[5]
  • Unidentified forces launched an airstrike against Ansar al Sharia militants in Rada’a, al Bayda on November 2, killing two militants.[6]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Suspected al Shabaab militants detonated a car bomb in the Hodan district of Mogadishu, killing one and injuring another on November 1. Suspected al Shabaab militants detonated a car bomb one day prior in the Yaqshid district of Mogadishu on October 31.[7]
  • Kenyan Defense Forces repulsed an attack carried out by unidentified militants on a military barrack, in Mombasa in Kenya’s Coast Province on November 2, killing six militants. Separately, Kenyan security forces thwarted gunmen at a police barracks in Malindi in Kenya’s Coast Province 120 km north of Mombasa on November 2. Unverified reports indicate that al Shabaab militants carried out both attacks, while some security officials blame the outlawed Mombasa Republican Council (MRC) which holds alleged ties to al Shabaab.[8]
  • Twelve unidentified gunmen ambushed Kenyan security forces, killing twenty police officers and two civilians, in Kapedo in Kenya’s Rift Valley Province on November 1. Security officials were unable to identify the assailants and indicated that the attackers that fled the scene are suspected of hiding in the area.[9]
  • A roadside improvised explosive device (IED) detonated near an African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) convoy in the Heliwa district of Mogadishu on November 2. One person was reportedly killed after AMISOM force opened fire during the explosion.[10]   
  • Two unidentified assailants on motorbikes killed two schoolgirls in the Dharkenley district of Mogadishu on November 2. Unidentified gunmen also on November 2 opened fire on civilians, killing two people in Wadajir district of Mogadishu.[11]   

[1] “Yemeni factions agree to form government,” al Jazeera, November 2, 2014. Available:
[2] “Yemeni president condemns official’s murder,” al Jazeera, November 3, 2014. Available:
“In latest targeted killing, senior Yemeni politician shot dead,” Yemen Post, November 3, 2014. Available:
[3] “Yemeni president condemns official’s murder,” al Jazeera, November 3, 2014. Available:
“Update 1-At least 23 killed as Yemen troops battle al Qaeda in al Hudaydah – local officials,” Reuters, November 1, 2014. Available:
Haykel Bafana Twitter account, November 3, 2014. Available:
Hussain al Bukhaiti Twitter account, November 3, 2014. Available:
[4] “U.S. asks U.N. to blacklist ex-Yemen president, rebel leaders,” Reuters, November 2, 2014. Available:
[5] “Officers and soldiers of the Public Security Square join sit-ins in Khormaksar and declare their demands of independence for the South,” Aden al Ghad, November 3, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[6] “Two al Qaeda militants were killed in a US Raid drone in Qifah, Rada’a (Names),” al Masdar, November 2, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[7] “SOMALIA: BREAKING: At least one dies in explosion in Mogadishu,” RBC Radio, November 1, 2014. Available:
AFP, “Deadly car bomb attack in Mogadishu,” Garowe Online, November 1, 2014. Available:
[8] Joseph Burite, “Kenya Probing al-Shabaab Links After Mombasa Barracks Attack,” Bloomberg, November 3, 2014. Available:
Joseph Akwiri, “Suspected separatists attack barracks, police camp on Kenya’s coast,” Reuters, November 2, 2014. Available:
[9] “20 policemen feared dead in bandit attack,” Daily Nation, November 2, 2014. Available:
Joseph Kangogo, “Kenya: More than 24 Police Officers Killed in Fresh Baringo Attacks,” the Star, November 1, 2014. Available:
AFP, “Kenyatta vows to punish ambushers as toll rises to 22,” Yahoo News, November 3, 2014. Available:
[10] “Bomb explosion targets AMISOM convoy in Suqa Holaha,” Goobjoog, November 2, 2014. Available: 
[11] “Breaking News: armed men kill 2 civilians in Mogadishu,” Goobjoog, November 2, 2014. Available:
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