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-Saleh delegation cancels Iran trip in order to meet UN Special Envoy in Oman; Saudi-led coalition airstrikes target al Houthi-Saleh positions in Salif district, al Hudaydah governorate and Sana’a city; Hadi government deploys additional security forces in al Mukalla city, Hadramawt governorate in preparation for Eid al Adha

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab militants attack SNA positions near Afgoi town, Lower Shabelle region; militants detonate IED targeting Puntland Security Forces near Bosaso, Puntland state; suspected al Shabaab militants kill three civilians in Jowhar, Middle Shabelle region

Yemen Security Brief

  • The al Houthi-Saleh delegation that recently met with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al Abadi in Baghdad canceled a scheduled visit to Iran in order to meet UN Special Envoy for Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed in Muscat, Oman on September 1. The al Houthi-Saleh delegation will review UN proposals for renewed peace negotiations. The al Houthi-Saleh delegation had planned to visit Iran and Lebanon as part of an effort to garner regional legitimacy for the Supreme Political Council.[1]
  • Saudi-led coalition airstrikes targeted al Houthi-Saleh positions in Salif district, al Hudaydah governorate on September 1. Coalition airstrikes hit al Houthi-Saleh coastal defense camps, a checkpoint in Salif village, the Salif air base, the Naval College, and a nearby sports club. The coalition bombed the High Military Academy on August 30 and the Yemen Police Academy on September 1 in Sana’a City.[2]
  • President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi’s government deployed additional security forces throughout al Mukalla city, Hadramawt governorate on September 2, citing increased security concerns for the upcoming Eid al Adha holiday. Coalition-backed security forces in al Mukalla recently completed counterterrorism training. Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) controlled al Mukalla from April 2015 until coalition-backed government forces seized the city in late April 2016. The Islamic State of Iraq and al Sham (ISIS) conducted explosive attacks targeting government forces in al Mukalla in May and June 2016.[3]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Al Shabaab militants attacked a Somali National Army (SNA) outpost near Afgoi town in Lower Shabelle region on September 1. The militants fired rocket propelled grenades (RPGs) at SNA positions. SNA security forces detained suspected al Shabaab fighters near Afgoi on August 30 following clashes in the area on August 29.[4]
  • Militants detonated an improvised explosive device (IED) targeting a Puntland Security Forces (PSF) vehicle near Bosaso in the semi-autonomous Puntland region on September 1. The blast wounded two security personnel. Al Shabaab launches attacks in the region from the nearby Galgala Mountains. Abdiqadir Mumin, a former al Shabaab commander who pledged allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and al Sham (ISIS) in October 2015, is rumored to be commanding a band of ISIS-linked Somali militants from the Galgala Mountains.[5]
  • Suspected al Shabaab militants killed three individuals in a home in Jowhar in Middle Shabelle region on September 1. Militants injured one Somali policeman in the attack. SNA forces drove al Shabaab from a village near Jowhar on August 9.[6]
[1] “Huthi delegation cancels visit to Iran and returns to home to meet Ould Cheikh,” Barakish, September 1, 2016,
[2] “Coalition waging a violent night raids and explosions rock # al Hudaydah,” Barakish, September 1, 2016,
[3] “Hadramout: army take measures, fearing attacks in Mukalla,” Barakish, September 2, 2016,
[4] “Gunmen attack SNA army base near Afgoye district,” Shabelle News, September 1, 2016,
[5] “:Puntland soldiers injured as IED targeted army convoy,” Shabelle News, September 1, 2016,
[6] “Al Shabaab raid on village near Mahaday kills Three,” Shabelle News, September 2, 2016,
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