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: al Houthi movement announces suspension of negotiations in Sa’ada; President Hadi issues statement regarding foreign intervention in Yemen; Yemeni military fights with al Houthi militants in Ma’rib; suspected al Houthi militants sabotage electrical lines in al Jawf

Horn of Africa: Ugandan security forces disrupt suspected al Shabaab terror cell in Kampala, Uganda; al Shabaab militants assassinate a senior Somali security official in Mogadishu; AMISOM forces seize villages from al Shabaab in Lower Jubba, Hiraan, and Galgudud regions; Jubbaland security forces capture two al Shabaab suspects in Kismayo, Lower Jubba region; Kenyan security forces kill suspected al Shabaab militant in Mombasa, Kenya

Yemen Security Brief

  • Al Houthi spokesmen announced the suspension of negotiations with the Yemeni government on September 14, citing previous clashes that occurred between al Houthi protesters and government soldiers in Sana’a that resulted in the deaths of ten protesters. Separately, al Houthi protesters reportedly established an armed camp in Hamdan, Sana’a on September 15 with up to 400 armed men.[1]
  • President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi issued a statement on September 13, warning against foreign intervention regarding the ongoing al Houthi demonstrations in Sana’a. Additionally, ambassadors from the G10 states reiterated President Hadi’s concerns and cautioned against foreign forces from further destabilizing the country.[2]
  • The Yemeni military attacked al Houthi gunmen in Ma’rib on September 12, allegedly killing 25 militants. Additionally, the Yemeni Air Force launched airstrikes against al Houthi militants in Ma’rib on September 13, killing 12. No soldiers were reported killed in the fighting.[3]
  • Suspected al Houthi militants sabotaged electricity lines in al Jawf on September 15, causing power outages throughout the region. Separately, unidentified assailants sabotaged a gas station in Ma’rib on September 15.[4]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Ugandan security officials disrupted a suspected al Shabaab terror cell, arresting 19 militants and recovering explosive materials, in Kampala, Uganda on September 13. The suspects allegedly were planning an imminent attack on prominent public locations in the city, according to Ugandan officials.[5]
  • Al Shabaab militants ambushed and killed a senior Somali counter-terrorism official, Mohamed Qanuuni, as he was traveling in Mogadishu on September 13.[6]
  • African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) forces seized a village near Badhadhe, Lower Jubba region from al Shabaab militants on September 12. Separately, AMISOM forces seized as many as eight villages from al Shabaab militants in Bulo-Burde district, Hiraan region and Elbur district, Galgadud region on September 13.[7]
  • Jubbaland security forces captured two al Shabaab militants, recovering weapons and explosive materials, while conducting a security operation in Kismayo, Lower Jubba region on September 14.[8]
  • Kenyan security forces killed a suspected al Shabaab militant linked to the July murders of two European tourists in Mombasa on September 14. Reports indicate that the suspect’s brother, also believed to be an al Shabaab militant, evaded arrest.[9]  

[1] “Houthis pin negotiations with the government, Barakish, September 15, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
“Houthi group to establish an armed camp in the vicinity of Fifth capital Sanaa,” al Masdar, September 15, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[2]“Yemen warns against foreign support for Houthi Rebels,” Middle East Eye, September 14, 2014. Available:
[3] “Yemen troops clash with Houthi Rebels,” al Jazeera, September 14, 2014. Available:
“A local source: the bombing of military targets Huthi leaders in Marib and 37 gunemn were killed in during the past two days,” al Masdar, September 14, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[4] “A second attack on the electricity pylons in Junction Hollow in less than a week out from the Marib gas service,” al Masdar, September 15, 2014 [Arabic]. Available:
[5] Nicholas Bariyo, “Uganda Forces Discovered Suicide Vests, IEDS at Suspected Terror Cell,” The Wall Street Journal, September 15, 2014. Available: 
[6] Feisal Omar and Abdi Sheikh, “Somali Islamists kill national security officer,” Reuters, September 13, 2014. Available:
[7] David Malingha Doya, “African Union Forces Destroy al-Shabaab Camps in South Somalia,” Bloomberg, September 15, 2014. Available:
[8] “Somalia: Al Shabaab Suspects, explosive devices seized in Kismayo,” Garowe Online, September 14, 2014. Available:
[9] Daniel Tsuma Nyassy and Bernard Namunane, “Police gun down alleged terrorist in morning raid,” Daily Nation, September 14, 2014. Available:
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