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: AQAP militants conduct simultaneous attacks in Sana’a and Hadramawt; recently appointed Prime Minister Ahmed Awad bin Mubarak resigns in Sana’a; Ansar al Sharia states purpose for attacks in al Bayda

Horn of Africa: AMISOM and Jubbaland security forces conduct operations targeting al Shabaab in Lower Jubba region; regional Somalia security forces clashed with al Shabaab militants in Hiraan region; Kenyan authorities detained two suspects allegedly planning to carry out an attack on a mall in Nairobi

Yemen Security Brief

  • Suspected al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula militants detonated a suicide vest (SVEST) targeting al Houthi supporters near Tahrir Square, Sana’a on October 9, killing as many as 47 people and wounding at least 75. Simultaneously, suspected AQAP militants detonated a suicide vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (SVBIED) near a security checkpoint in Mukalla, Hadramawt killing as many as 20 soldiers and wounding 15. Additionally, al Houthi militants claimed to have stopped an additional attack on the same square earlier this morning.[1]
  • The recently appointed Prime Minister of Yemen, Ahmed Awad bin Mubarak, resigned on October 8 after al Houthi leader, Abdul Malik al Houthi, called for a mass demonstration in Sana’a protesting his appointment. Al Houthi claimed bin Mubarak was a product of “foreign interference.”[2]
  • Ansar al Sharia stated that their October 8 attacks in Al Bayda were in response to the Military’s alleged cooperation with the al Houthis.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and Jubbaland security forces seized Mugaanbow, Bangeeni, and Bear Sanguuni areas in Lower Jubba region from al Shabaab militants on October 8. The security forces are reportedly advancing towards al Shabaab safe havens in Jamame, Lower Jubba region and Jilib, Middle Jubba region. Separately, Kenyan AMISOM forces conducted a security operation in the recently seized town of Bulo Gaduud, Lower Jubba region, killing 12 al Shabaab militants, on October 8. Finally, AMISOM and Jubbaland security forces conducted a separate security operation targeting al Shabaab militants in Hagar, Lower Jubba on October 9.[4] 
  • Westland security forces clashed with al Shabaab militants near Beledweyne, Hiraan region on October 9, resulting in an unknown number of casualties. Westland security forces represent the recently integrated Westland regional administration, governing Bakool, Bay, and Lower Shabelle regions.[5]
  • Kenyan authorities arrested two suspects allegedly plotting to carry out an attack on an unidentified mall in Nairobi, Kenya on October 7. Kenyan police confiscated detailed instructions during the arrest and indicated that three additional suspects are at large.[6]

[1] “Suicide Bombings in Yemen Kill at Least 40 People,” ABC News, October 9, 2014. Available:
“Yemen suicide attack kills at least 42 people,” The Guardian, October 9, 2014. Available:
“Yemen’s Health Ministry Raises the Toll in the suicide Bombing in Sanaa to 47 Dead, 75 Wounded,” ABC News, October 9, 2014. Available:
[2] “Yemen’s new prime minister quits after Houthis call mass protest,” Reuters, October 8, 2014. Available:
[3] Pro Ansar al Sharia Twitter account
[4] “Kenya Defence Forces capture Al shabaab camp at Bula Gaduud and kill 12 militia,” Bar Kulan, October 9, 2014. Available:
“Somalia: Jubaland, AU troops advancing on Jilib after deadly battle,” Garowe Online, October 8, 2014. Available:
“IJA and AMISOM conducts operation in Hagar locality,” Goobjoog News, October 9, 2014. Available:
[5] “Clashes occur in the outskirts of Beledweyne,” Goobjoog news, October 9, 2014. Available:
[6] Kenyan police arrest 2 sauspected terrorists planning mall attack,” Sabahi, October 8, 2014. Available:
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