The US military, in coordination with the federal government of Somalia and US Africa Command [Africom], carried out airstrikes on Sunday (December 29), targeting al-Qaeda linked al-Shabaab, in Somalia. The strikes came a day after a deadly truck bomb attack at Somalian capital Mogadishu killed at least 90, mostly students on December 27. Strikes against al-Shabaab has increased considerably since President Donald Trump took office in 2017.
What happened in the December 29 airstrikes?
US Africa Command [Africom] put out a statement that said Africom and the US military, in close coordination with the federal government of Somalia, carried out airstrikes targeting al-Shabaab militants. Four al-Shabaab terrorists were killed in the three airstrikes carried out in the vicinity of Qunyo Barrow and Caliyoow Barrow, respectively. According to initial assessment, no civilians were killed or injured.
In the statement, US Army Maj Gen William Gayler, director of operations, Africom, said: "Since al-Shabaab's first external attack in 2010, the group has ruthlessly killed hundreds. They've attacked and killed African partners, allies and fellow Americans. They are a global menace and their sights are set on exporting violence regionally and eventually attacking the U.S. homeland".
Mogadishu car bombing
On Saturday [December 28], a truck bomb exploded at a busy security checkpoint, during morning rush hours, at Somalian capital Mogadishu, Associated Press reported. The attack killed at least 90, mostly students, and injured dozens.
Though no one claimed responsibility for the attack, al-Qaeda linked Islamist group al-Shabaab has carried out a number of attacks in the region, most prominent being, the 2017 car bomb attack at Mogadishu, that killed 587.
Increased strikes targeting al-Shabaab since Trump assumed office
Since President Donald Trump assumed office, strikes targeting al-Shabaab, has increased considerably. In a statement, in April, this year, Africom said it had killed more than 800 people in 110 airstrikes in Somalia since April 2017. Though al-Shabaab was forced out of Somalian capital, in 2011, it still controls parts of the countryside.