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Pentagon strikes al Qaeda's Somalia affiliate


By Ryan Browne, CNN

Washington (CNN)The US military carried out several drone strikes in Somalia in the last few weeks, targeting dozens of anti-government militants who the Pentagon said were associated with the local al Qaeda affiliate, al-Shabaab.

The US military conducted an airstrike Saturday that targeted a group of al-Shabaab militants about 26 miles southwest of Bosasso, Somalia, according to US Africa Command, which oversees US military operations on the continent.

Africa Command said Monday that 27 "terrorists" were killed in that strike.

On Thursday, US forces conducted an airstrike 30 miles southwest of Somalia's capital, Mogadishu. Africa Command said that strike killed 12 "terrorists."

No civilian casualties

That strike came about a week after a US airstrike near Mogadishu that Africa Command said killed 10 al-Shabaab fighters.

Africa Command said none of the strikes were assessed to have caused civilian casualties and that all of them were carried out in coordination with the US-backed Federal Government of Somalia.

The US military has carried out 16 strikes against al-Shabaab militants, fighting positions, infrastructure and equipment in 2018, Pentagon spokeswoman Maj. Sheryll Klinkel told CNN.

In 2017, the US carried out 36 airstrikes in Somalia, the largest a November strike against an al-Shabaab camp that killed more than 100 militants.

Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2018/06/04/politics/pentagon-somalia-al-qaeda-strikes/