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: Prime Minister Khaled Bahah returns to Aden; coalition airstrikes target al Houthis in northern and central Yemen

Horn of Africa: Ahlu Sunna wa al Jama’a militia declares war on Galmudug State

Yemen Security Brief

  • Yemeni Prime Minister Khaled Bahah and seven Yemeni ministers returned to Aden on September 16 after several months in exile. A government spokesman reported that Vice President Bahah has returned to Aden permanently and that he will focus on increasing security, rebuilding infrastructure, and incorporating southern resistance forces into the Yemeni army. Local authorities have failed to reestablish security and government services in Aden since Arab coalition troops reclaimed it from al Houthi forces in July. Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has reportedly expanded its influence in Aden in recent months.[1]
  • The Saudi-led coalition launched airstrikes throughout northern and central Yemen on September 15. An al Houthi-run news agency reported that airstrikes killed dozens in Dhamar and al Mahwit governorates, which surround the al Houthi-held capital of Sana’a.  Airstrikes also targeted al Houthi sites in the northern governorates of Sa’ada and Hajjah as well as the central Yemeni city of Taiz, which has seen weeks of entrenched fighting between the al Houthis and popular resistance forces.[2]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • A spokesperson from the anti-al Shabaab militia, Ahlu Sunna wa al Jama'a (ASWJ), stated that the group will engage in an all-out war against the Galmudug state, backed by the Somali Federal Government. He added that the group will begin the offensive by retaking the cities of Abudwak and Adaaco. The two groups have recently been in conflict over territory in Central Somalia, with ASWJ refusing to recognize the Galmudug state as a legitimate entity.[3]

[1] Mohammed Mukhashaf, “Yemeni government returns to Aden after months in exile: spokesman,” Reuters, September 16, 2015. Available:
[2] “Saudi-led strikes kill at least 54 Yemenis: Houthi-run agency,” Reuters, September 15, 2015. Available:
“Coalition planes launch five airstrikes on al Houthi and Saleh sites in Taiz,” Al Masdar, September 16, 2015. [Arabic] Available:
[3] “Ahlusunna announces planned offensives against Galmudug State,” Wacaal Media, September 16, 2015. Available:
“Galmudug, Ahlu Sunna clash in Abudwak,” Bar Kulan, September 9, 2015. Available:
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