U.S. airstrikes said to kill Al Qaida militants in Somalia

Special to WorldTribune.com

U.S. air strikes killed about a dozen members of Al Qaida’s affiliate in Somalia on April 11 and 12, the Pentagon said.

Al-Shabab jihadists in Somalia. /AP
Al-Shabab jihadists in Somalia. /AP

The strikes targeted members of Al-Shabab in southern Somalia, who Pentagon spokesman Capt. Jeff Davis said posed an “imminent threat to U.S. personnel” in the region. The strikes were carried out by unmanned aircraft, Reuters reported.

Al-Shabab has launched almost daily attacks in Somalia, the latest a car bombing in the capital Mogadishu on April 11 that killed at least five people. The Al Qaida affiliate is waging an insurgency against the Western-backed government in Somalia, which has elections slated for later in 2016.

The Al Qaida affiliate has carried out several attacks on military targets, including a raid on an African Union base in El Adde, in the Gedo region of Somalia near to the border with Kenya, in January. As many as 200 Kenyan soldiers were killed in the attack, Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud said.

The Pentagon said 150 members of Al-Shabab were killed in March in manned and unmanned strikes on a training camp 195 kilometers (120 miles) north of Mogadishu. Al-Shabab confirmed that the strikes took place but denied the casualty toll given by the U.S.