US airstrike kills 10 al-Shabab extremists in Somalia, military says

The U.S. military launched its first airstrikes of 2019 in Somalia, picking up where it left off at year’s end.

The U.S. military’s Africa Command said an American airstrike Wednesday killed 10 al-Shabab fighters in Dheerow Sanle, Somalia west of the capital, Mogadishu.

The strike was meant to “increase pressure” on the terrorist network, according to a statement from the U.S. Africa Command.

No civilians were killed in the strike, the statement said.

Last year, the U.S. military launched a record-setting 45 airstrikes against the al-Qaeda affiliated group al-Shabab.

In 2017, the military conducted 35 strikes in Somalia after President Trump ordered the military to go on offense. The U.S. military could only conduct airstrikes in self-defense under the Obama administration.

The U.S. military has also struck an ISIS-affiliated group in Somalia as well in the past year.

The al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab continues to control large parts of the country’s southern and central regions and carry out deadly bombings against high-profile targets in the capital, Mogadishu.

Includes reporting by The Associated Press.

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