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 releases biography of slain fighter; three explosions hit capital of Dhaleh governorate; Defense Minister urges cooperation between security and military forces

Horn of Africa: UN Secretary General urges TFG, international community to cooperate for Somali peace; Ahlu Sunna wa al Jama’a says al Shabaab planning attacks in Galgudud; ONLF denies standoff with Somaliland forces; Somali prime minister welcomes solution to end dispute with president

Yemen Security Brief

  • Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula’s media arm, al Malahem Foundation, issued a biography of Salman al Sana’ani, also known as Hani Abdu Musleh Sha’alan.  His biography is the second to be released in a series entitled, “Martyrs of the Peninsula.”  Sana’ani was a former Guantanamo detainee (#225) and was killed in a December 17, 2009 air strike.[1]

  • Yemen’s Interior Ministry announced that three simultaneous explosions hit the capital of Dhaleh governorate on Tuesday.  The blasts were attributed to southern separatists and no casualties were reported.[2]

  • Defense Minister Brigadier General Mohammad Nasser Ahmad called for increased cooperation between security and military forces in order to pursue terrorists and bring fugitives to justice. Ahmad’s statement came during a meeting with the security apparatus of Lahij governorate.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has issued a report to the UN Security Council calling on the TFG leadership to end the in-fighting that has prevented the execution of key tasks and urging the international community to provide the necessary military and financial aid to counter extremist forces. "It is important that the Transitional Federal Government develop credible government structures to deliver services to its people," Mr. Ban says in the report. "In order to support the Transitional Federal Government in addressing some of its most daunting challenges, notably extending its authority and combating the threat of extremism, I appeal to the international community to provide urgent military and financial support and other resources," he adds.[4]

  • Ahlu Sunna wa al Jama’a claimed that al Shabaab plans to attack areas in Galgudud.  Most of the region is controlled by Ahlu Sunna. A spokesman for the group, Abdullahi Abdirahman, said, “We are warning about looming danger from al Shabaab, we urging the people to contact our authorities about any attacks from the group.”[5]

  • Ethiopia-based Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) denied the Somaliland officials’ statements that the Somaliland militia had surrounded almost 300 of its fighters after they landed on the coast after training in Eritrea. Somaliland officials also reported Ethiopian military involvement in the battle. ONLF sources in Ethiopia told journalists the reports were lies. "This is untrue," a senior ONLF member said. "There are no ONLF units in Somaliland. There are no ONLF units outside the borders of Ethiopia." An ONLF-linked website also denied that ONLF fighters were in Somaliland.[6]

  • Somali Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke told reporters Tuesday he welcomes a solution to the ongoing dispute with President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed. Sharmarke also said that TFG officials need to focus on bringing peace to Somalia instead of its internal disagreements.[7]


[1] “AQAP Releases Biography of Slain Saudi-Yemeni Fighter,” SITE Intelligence Service, September 14, 2010. Available on SITE.
“The Guantanamo Docket: Hani Abdul Muslih al Shulan,” New York Times.  Available:
[2] “Three Coincident Explosions Rock South Yemen, Separatists Blamed,” Xinhua News, September 15, 2010.  Available:
[3] “Defense Minister stresses on pursuing fugitives,” Saba Net, September 14, 2010. Available:
[4] “Interim Authorities, World Community Must Play Their Part for Somali Peace - Ban,” UN News Service, September 14, 2010. Available:
[5] “Somalia Pres Talks with Cabinet, Ahlu Sunna Concerned of al Shabaab Attack,” Garowe Online, September 14, 2010. Available:
[6] “Ethiopia rebels deny standoff with Somaliland forces,” Reuters, September 15, 2010. Available:
[7] “PM: ‘I welcome solving the dispute between me and President Sharif,” Shabelle Media Network, September 15, 2010. Available:
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