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: Explosives target Air Force buses in Sana’a; AQAP threatens execution of tribesmen in al Bayda; tribal mediation stops clashes in al Radma, Ibb; AQAP releases video of kidnapped Saudi Abdallah al Khalidi; al Houthis clash with tribesmen in Amran; gunmen attack GPC leader’s house; sentencing scheduled for AQAP members who plotted to assassinate President Hadi; AQAP attacks police checkpoint in Aden; 113th Brigade clashes with gunmen in Ma’rib city; soldiers protest in Sana’a

Horn of Africa: Al Shabaab targets Western intelligence members in Mogadishu bombing; Jubbaland administration claims to have secured Kismayo; grenade attack in Beledweyne, Hiraan; Federal Government of Somali and Jubbaland begin bilateral talks; Puntland claims to have stifled al Shabaab attacks; al Shabaab attacks AMISOM bases in Bay and Lower Jubba regions; explosives attacks against AMISOM and civilians in Mogadishu; Somali National Army makes mass arrest in Mogadishu; Somali President calls for united fight against al Shabaab; suspected al Shabaab recruiter arrested in Kenya; Norway begins paying Somali government employee salaries

Yemen Security Brief

  • Two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) exploded near Yemeni Air Force buses in Sana’a on September 9. No one was injured in the attack and the buses suffered only minor damage.[1]
  • Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) kidnapped four people, including a tribal sheikh, in al Bayda on September 9. They threatened to execute the hostages in retaliation for the killing of Qaid al Dhahab, AQAP emir of al Bayda. AQAP also announced the death of Jasar al Ban, leader of AQAP in Lahij, during recent fighting with the popular committee in the governorate.[2]
  • Tribal mediation on September 8 succeeded in establishing a ceasefire for one year between al Houthis and tribesmen in al Radma, Ibb.[3]
  • AQAP released a video on September 8 of kidnapped Saudi diplomat Abdallah al Khalidi asking for Saudis to protest in the streets until the government negotiates his release. It was the fourth video of the diplomat, whom AQAP captured in March, 2012.[4]
  • Al Houthis and tribesmen renewed clashes in al ‘Asha, Amran governorate on September 8. The fighting killed five tribesmen and fifteen al Houthis and wounded others.[5]
  • Gunmen shot at and threw grenades into the house of Abdul Wahid al Jabri in al Masrakh, Taiz governorate on September 8. There were no casualties. Al Jabri is a leader in the General People’s Congress (GPC).[6]
  • On September 8 the criminal court in Sana’a heard the closing arguments for the case of four Yemenis accused of belonging to AQAP and plotting to assassinate President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi. Sentencing is scheduled to begin on September 15.[7]
  • The Yemen Post reported that a U.S. drone strike struck in Askariya, Lahij governorate on September 7. The source reported that two AQAP members were killed and two were wounded. No other local or international sources reported the strike.[8]
  • AQAP attacked a police checkpoint on the road between Aden and Abyan on September 7. Two soldiers were wounded.[9]
  • The 113th Brigade clashed with gunmen in Ma’rib city on September 6. No casualty report was given, but sources report that the fighting involved machine guns and artillery, and that three shells landed inside the command camp of the Third Military District.[10]
  • Newly recruited soldiers protested in Sana’a on September 5 because they had not been paid.[11]

Horn of Africa Security Brief

  • Al Shabaab detonated a bomb outside the Village Restaurant in Mogadishu killing at least 15 on September 7. Al Shabaab spokesman Abdi Aziz Abu Mus’ab stated that UK spies were the primary target of the attack and that CIA members were killed.[12]
  • Jubbaland security official Moalim Mohamed Ibrahim claimed that the state had control of security in Kismayo, citing thwarted al Shabaab attacks, on September 9.[13]
  • A grenade exploded after being thrown into a restaurant in Beledweyne, Hiraan region on September 8. No group has claimed responsibility in the attack, which killed one and injured three others. [14]
  • Jubbaland President Ahmed Mohamed Islam Madobe began bilateral talks with the Federal Government of Somalia in Mogadishu on September 8. The meetings are meant to resolve tensions between Jubbaland and the federal government.[15]
  • Puntland security forces claimed that increased operations against al Shabaab hideouts in the Golis Mountains have led to a decrease in al Shabaab attacks in Puntland region on September 6.[16]
  • Al Shabaab militants attacked the Bardale AMISOM base in Bay region and another AMISOM base in Lower Jubba region on September 9. Casualties were reported but exact figures were not released.[17]
  • A timed landmine detonated and destroyed an AMISOM supply vehicle in Mogadishu on September 8. [18]
  • Somali National Army troops arrested dozens and seized their property during an operation in Mogadishu on September 8. The arrests came following orders to increase security in Mogadishu.[19]
  • Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud advocated for politicians and civilians to unite in the fight against al Shabaab on September 8.[20]
  • Kenyan police arrested a 20-year-old on suspicion of recruiting for al Shabaab in Nyahururu, Kenya on September 9.[21]
  • Norway began paying salaries of 380 Somalia Federal Government employees on September 6. Norway claims the effort will assist in state building and long term stability.[22]

[1] “Two Blasts Targeting Military Buses in Sana’a, No Injuries,” Saba, September 9, 2013. Available:
[2] “Al Qaeda Kidnaps 4 Yemenis in al Bayda, Among them a Tribal Sheikh, Because of Killing of al Dhahab,” al Ain Online, September 9, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[3] “Tribal Arbitration and 20 Rifles Stops Battle for an Entire Year in al Radma, Ibb,” Yemen Saeed, September 9, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[4] “AQAP Releases Fourth Video Appeal from Captured Saudi Diplomat,” SITE Intel Group, September 8, 2013. Available: SITE
[5] “20 Killed in Fighting Between al Houthis and Gunmen in Amran,” Barakish, September 9, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[6] “Bomb Attacks Targets House of GPC Leader,” HSHD, September 9, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[7] “Plotting the Assassination of President Hadi, the Issue is Before the Courts to Decide,” Mareb Press, September 8, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[8] “Drone Strikes in Lahij Kill Terror Militants,” Yemen Post, September 8, 2013. Available:
[9] “Two Soldiers Wounded in Attack on Military Checkpoint in Aden,” Barakish, September 8, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[10] “Breaking: Violent Clashes Between Gunmen and the Army in Ma’rib City,” Barakish, September 6, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[11] “Soldiers Protest in Camp of 1st Armored and Demand Removal of al Maqdashi,” Barakish, September 7, 2013 [Arabic]. Available:
[12] “Somalia Blast Hit Mogadishu Village Restaurant,” BBC, September 7, 2013. Available:; “Al Shabab says Saturday’s attacks aimed to targer ‘Western spies’ in Mogadishu,” RBC Radio, September 8, 2013. Available:; “We killed CIA representatives in the attack in a restaurant in Mogadishu’ says Shabaab,” Dalsan radio, September 9, 2013. Available:
[13] “Security Officials: Kisamayo Security has Improved,” Bar Kulan, September 8, 2013. Available:
[14] “Grenade attack kills one, injures 3 in Beledweyne” Bar Kulan, September 8, 2013. Available:
[15] “Madobe in Mogadishu for Reconciliation Talks,” Sabahi online, September 8, 2013. Available:
[16] “Puntland steps up fight against al Shabaab in Golis Mountains,” Sabahi online, September 6, 2013. Available:
[17] “Fighting between government forces and Alshabab in Baay and lower Juba regions of Somalia,” Shabelle, September 9, 2013. Available:
[18] “Land mine explosion targets AMISOM troops in Mogadishu,” Shabelle, September 8, 2013. Available:
[19] “Dozens arrested in Mogadishu crackdown,” Shabelle, September 8, 2013. Available:
[20] “Let’s join hands and fight Alshabab says President Hassan,” Shabelle, September 8, 2013. Available:
[21] “Man arrested in Laikipia for allegedly recruiting youth to join Al Shabaab,” The Nation, September 9, 2013. Available:
[22] Norway Pays Somalia’s Government Salaries,” Bar Kulan, September 9, 2013. Available:
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