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: President Hadi returns to Aden

Horn of Africa: A roadside bombing in Mandera Kenya kills 3 and wounds 7 Kenyan security forces; SNA and AMISOM forces in the Hiraan region repulse al Shabaab attacks and kill 20 militants; Poland confirms Polish citizen is among those killed in September 21 attack on Villa Somalia

Yemen Security Brief

  • Yemeni President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi returned to Aden after six months in exile. The internationally recognized leader fled Aden when al Houthi forces closed in on the southern port city in March. President Hadi’s return, along with the return of Vice President Khaled Bahah and several other government ministers last week, suggests that the Saudi-led Arab coalition has secured enough territory in the south for the government to re-establish its presence in Yemen and resume its administration over part of the Yemeni population. President Hadi will reportedly spend the Eid al Adha holiday in Aden before flying to New York to address the United Nations.[1]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • A roadside bomb targeting a Kenyan army vehicle detonated, killing three police officers and wounding seven members of the Kenya Defense Forces (KDF) on September 22 in Mandera city, located within Mandera County. The blast was reportedly targeting Mandera’s governor, Ali Roba, who was not harmed in the incident. Al Shabaab has since claimed responsibility for the attack.[2]
  • Somali military officials stated that their forces, backed by African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) troops, killed a combined 20 militants from al Shabaab in various attacks on military bases in Somalia’s Hiraan region on September 22. The attacks occurred in two unspecified villages located near the Hiraan’s regional capital city of Beledweyne, and were reportedly thwarted without any casualties to the defending Somali or AMISOM forces.[3]
  • Poland’s Ministry of Foreign affairs has confirmed that at least one Polish citizen was among those killed in al Shabaab’s suicide vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (SVBIED) attack on the country’s presidential palace in Mogadishu on September 21. The victim, who held dual Polish and Somali citizenship, is the first officially confirmed foreign national killed in the attack, although there are unverified reports of other foreigners being victims in the attack.[4]

[1] Mohammed Mukhashaf, “Yemeni president returns to Aden after six-month exile,” Reuters, September 22, 2015. Available:
[2] “Three police officers killed in bomb explosion by al Shabaab in Kenya town,” Shabelle News, September 23, 2015. Available:
Warka, “Govornor Ali Roba survives Mandera explosion three Kenya police dead,” Mareeg, September 23, 2015. Available:
[3] “Somalia: Heavy battle leaves 20 Al Shabaab dead in villages in Hiran region,” Shabelle News September 22, 2015. Available:
[4] “Pole confirmed dead in Somalian bomb blast,” Radio Poland, September 23, 2015. Available:,Pole-confirmed-dead-in-Somalian-bomb-blast
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