Pen­tagon says hit al-Shabab from air

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - INTERNATIONAL -

MOGADISHU, So­ma­lia — The U.S. mil­i­tary said it has car­ried out an airstrike against al-Shabab in So­ma­lia as Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s ad­min­is­tra­tion qui­etly steps up ef­forts against the dead­li­est Is­lamic ex­trem­ist group in Africa.

Pen­tagon spokesman Maj. Au­dri­cia Har­ris said the strike oc­curred Sun­day af­ter­noon So­ma­lia time and that the U.S. was as­sess­ing the re­sults.

She did not call it a drone strike. So­mali of­fi­cials have said the U.S. has car­ried out sev­eral drone strikes in re­cent years against the al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab.

The airstrike fol­lows one in June that the U.S. said killed eight Is­lamic ex­trem­ists at a rebel com­mand and lo­gis­tics camp in the coun­try’s south.

Trump has ap­proved ex­panded mil­i­tary op­er­a­tions against al-Shabab, in­clud­ing more ag­gres­sive airstrikes and con­sid­er­ing parts of south­ern So­ma­lia ar­eas of ac­tive hos­til­i­ties. The U.S. in April an­nounced it was send­ing dozens of reg­u­lar troops to So­ma­lia in the largest such de­ploy­ment there in roughly two decades, say­ing it was for lo­gis­tics train­ing of So­ma­lia’s army.

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