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US executes air strike in Somalia’s capital

Published: December 13, 2017
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In coordination with the Federal Government of Somalia, the US conducted an air strike against Al-Shabaab obliterating a vehicle, US Africa Command (AFRICOM) said in a press release.

The strike targeted an Al-Shabaab vehicle located some 65 kilometres southwest of the capital, Mogadishu. “We assess no civilians were killed in the strike,” AFRICOM said.

“US forces will continue to use all authorised and appropriate measures to protect US citizens and to disable terrorist threats. This includes partnering with AMISOM and Somali National Security Forces (SNSF) in combined counterterrorism operations and targeting terrorists, their training camps and their safe haven throughout Somalia and the region,” AFRICOM continued.

In March, Trump gave the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the US military broader powers to execute strikes and raid operations in Somalia, considering parts of the country “temporary battlefields”. Beyond the frequent use of drone strikes, the US has used the controversial counter-terrorism raids across Somalia, with brutal consequences on civilians.

The US has executed drone strikes in Somalia since 2007, which have reportedly killed 677 and injured 53 according to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism.

Al-Shabaab is a non-state armed group which gave a pledge of allegiance to Al-Qaeda in 2012. It seeks to dislodge the Federal Government and apply a strict interpretation of Islamic law. Somalia has seen an uptick in violence since 2007, including frequent explosive violence in densely populated areas.

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