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 protesters storm the U.S. Embassy in Sana’a; Yemeni tribesmen kidnap a Turkish national in Abyan governorate 

Horn of Africa: Somali cabinet holds a special meeting congratulating President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud; top UN leaders condemn assassination attempt on Somali president; Somalia’s new president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud speaks after assassination attempt                       

Yemen Security Brief

  • Yemeni protesters stormed the U.S. Embassy in Sana’a on September 13, breaching the outer security perimeter of the embassy and gaining access to an interior courtyard. The protesters destroyed property and replaced the U.S. flag with an Islamic faith banner. The protesters were not able to gain entry to buildings housing U.S. personnel. According to Yemen security forces, 15 protesters were injured and 12 were arrested. The Yemeni government condemned the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Sana’a and pledged to honor international obligations to protect foreign diplomats. All U.S. Embassy personnel are safe and accounted for according to an unidentified senior government official.[1]
  • A Turkish national was kidnapped by Yemeni tribesmen in southern Abyan governorate on September 12. The unidentified Turk, reportedly a bus driver for a tourism agency in southern port city of Aden, was traveling to al Mukalla in Hadramawt governorate in east Yemen when Yemeni tribesmen stopped his vehicle and kidnapped him.[2] 

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Somalia’s cabinet held a special meeting on September 13 to welcome the newly elected president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud. The meeting was headed by former Prime Minister Abdiweli Mohamed Ali, who spoke about the end of the Somali government’s transitional period and also condemned the attacks on President-elect Mohamud.  Information Minister Abdikadir Hussein Jahweyn spoke after the meeting and urged a renewed security effort during the inauguration on September 16.[3]
  • The United Nations condemned the assassination attempt made on President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, Somalia’s recently elected president. A spokesperson for Secretary General of the United Nations Ban Ki Moon told the press on September 12 that the bombing will not reverse any progress Somalia made during the election and reiterated UN support of the new Somali government. The Special Representative of the Secretary General to Somalia, Dr. Augustine P. Mahiga said the killings were “deplorable” but that Somalia’s drive to create a functioning government will not be deterred.[4]
  • After the blasts at a news conference in Mogadishu on September 12, newly elected President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud appeared resilient to the press.  He told the media after the attack that Somalia’s security would be the first issue he addresses.  He described security as being Somalia’s “priority number one, priority number two, and priority number three.”[5]    

[1] “Protesters Angry over Anti-Islam Film Storm US Embassy in Yemen,” Fox News, September 13, 2012. Available:
“Yemen Says No Casualties in Attack on Embassy in Sana’a,” Reuters, September 13, 2012. Available:
“Turmoil Spreads to U.S. Embassy in Yemen,” New York Times, September 13, 2012. Available:
“Rage at the Embassies: Protests Swell in Israel, Yemen, Iran, Egypt,” CNN, September 13, 2012. Available:
[2] “Yemeni Tribesmen Kidnap Turkish Man in South’s Abyan,” Reuters, September 12, 2012. Available:
[3] “Cabinet Welcomes Election of President Mohamud,” Bar Kulan, September 13, 2012. Available:
“Somalia: UN Officials Condemn Attack on Hotel during New President’s Press Conference,” UN News Center, September 12, 2012. Available:
[4] “Mahiga Condemns Wednesday Attack in Mogadishu,” Bar Kulan, September 13, 2012. Available:
[5] “Two Days into the Job, Somali President Survives Attack,” Reuters, September 12, 2012. Available:
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