Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

USSOM197

Incident date

February 23, 2019

Location

Dacaraha, Lower Shabelle, Somalia

Geolocation

1.55556, 44.13643 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

A US airstrike targeted alleged al Shabaab militants in the vicinity of Dacaraha village, 50 km west of Mogadishu, a local source reported.

Publicly AFRICOM said it had conducted two strikes near Kunyo Barrow that day, with others at Janaale and Awdhegle. The other Kunyo barrow strike – which hit the town itself – reportedly killed a father and child and is documented in a separate event.

The Pentagon announced the four airstrikes on February 23rd in a press release from US Africa Command. “These four airstrikes eliminated checkpoints and facilities used by al-Shabaab to collect illegal taxes to fund terrorist activities and to oppress the innocent people of Somalia,” the AFRICOM statement read. It also assessed that no civilians were injured or killed in these strikes, but that two terrorists were killed.

In an email to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, US Africa Command later stated that the two terrorists were killed in the airstrike that hit Kunyow Barrow.

In September 2019, TRT World Research Centre published an investigation into the event. “A local media station, Gundhig reported in the morning of the attack on 24 February that the “air strike, which happened at midnight last night, targeted al-Shabaab operated areas, including Kuunya Barrow, Awdheegle, and the Dacaaraha village, which is near to Qoryoley and Janaale.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    0–2

Sources (10) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (4) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention that the strike took place in the vicinity of Janaale, near the village Dacaraha. The coordinates for Dacaraha are: 1.55556, 44.13643. Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

United States Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    United States Armed Forces
  • United States Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

United States Armed Forces

In support of the Federal Government of Somalia's increased efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. Africa Command conducted four airstrikes on February 23, 2019.

"Somali-led operations continue to place pressure on the al-Shabaab network, creating conditions for enhanced stability and security," said Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Gregg Olson, U.S. Africa Command director of operations. "In addition to creating enhanced security, airstrikes help to disrupt al-Shabaab operations and the network while preventing future attacks by this terrorist group."

Two airstrikes on February 23 occurred in the vicinity of Kunyow Barrow, Somalia, which is approximately 250 kilometers southwest of Mogadishu. One airstrike occurred in the vicinity of Awdeegle, Somalia, which is approximately 50 kilometers west of Mogadishu. One airstrike occurred in the vicinity of Janaale, Somalia, which is approximately 75 kilometers southwest of Mogadishu.

Airstrikes such as these complement our Somali partners’ successes against al-Shabaab, and are one component of our combined efforts to protect the Somali people from terrorism. Somali security forces continue to effectively target al-Shabaab forces in order to increase the span of governance of the Federal Government of Somalia.

These four airstrikes eliminated checkpoints and facilities used by al-Shabaab to collect illegal taxes to fund terrorist activities and to oppress the innocent people of Somalia.

"Degrading various facilities and checkpoints impacts al-Shabaab’s ability to finance operations, recruit, and execute operations," said Olson. "The Federal Government of Somalia continues to place persistent pressure on the network."

At this time, it is assessed these airstrikes killed two terrorists.

At this time, it is assessed no civilians were injured or killed in these airstrikes.

U.S. Africa Command will continue to work with its partners to transfer the responsibility for long-term security in Somalia from AMISOM to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States. In support of the Federal Government of Somalia, U.S. forces will use all effective and appropriate methods to assist in the protection of the Somali people, including partnered military counter-terror operations with the Federal Government of Somalia, AMISOM and Somali National Army forces.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    0–2

Sources (10) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USSOM196

Incident date

February 23, 2019

Location

Awdeegle, Lower Shabelle, Somalia

Geolocation

1.977202, 44.833162 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

The Pentagon announced four airstrikes on February 23rd in a press release issued by US Africa Command. One of these airstrikes occurred in Awdeegle, 50 kilometres west of Mogadishu.

The press release read: “These four airstrikes eliminated checkpoints and facilities used by al-Shabaab to collect illegal taxes to fund terrorist activities and to oppress the innocent people of Somalia,.”

AFRICOM assessed that no civilians were injured or killed in these strikes, but that two terrorists were. In an email, US Africa Command later told the Bureau of Investigative Journalism that the two terrorists were killed in one of the airstrikes that hit Kunyow Barrow.

According to local reports, the four US strikes targeted Da’araha; Kunya Barrow (where two civilians died and at least two more were injured, it was locally reported); the vicinity of Janaale and Qoryoley (where one additional adult female civilian was said to have died); and Awdhegle. The Da’araha action appears to be the second event cited by AFRICOM for that day near Kunya Barrow.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab

Sources (10) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (4) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention that the strike took place in the vicinity of Awdeegle, 50 kilometers west of Mogadishu. The coordinates for Awdeegle are: 1.977202, 44.833162. Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

United States Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    United States Armed Forces
  • United States Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

United States Armed Forces

In support of the Federal Government of Somalia's increased efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. Africa Command conducted four airstrikes on February 23, 2019.

"Somali-led operations continue to place pressure on the al-Shabaab network, creating conditions for enhanced stability and security," said Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Gregg Olson, U.S. Africa Command director of operations. "In addition to creating enhanced security, airstrikes help to disrupt al-Shabaab operations and the network while preventing future attacks by this terrorist group."

Two airstrikes on February 23 occurred in the vicinity of Kunyow Barrow, Somalia, which is approximately 250 kilometers southwest of Mogadishu. One airstrike occurred in the vicinity of Awdeegle, Somalia, which is approximately 50 kilometers west of Mogadishu. One airstrike occurred in the vicinity of Janaale, Somalia, which is approximately 75 kilometers southwest of Mogadishu.

Airstrikes such as these complement our Somali partners’ successes against al-Shabaab, and are one component of our combined efforts to protect the Somali people from terrorism. Somali security forces continue to effectively target al-Shabaab forces in order to increase the span of governance of the Federal Government of Somalia.

These four airstrikes eliminated checkpoints and facilities used by al-Shabaab to collect illegal taxes to fund terrorist activities and to oppress the innocent people of Somalia.

"Degrading various facilities and checkpoints impacts al-Shabaab’s ability to finance operations, recruit, and execute operations," said Olson. "The Federal Government of Somalia continues to place persistent pressure on the network."

At this time, it is assessed these airstrikes killed two terrorists.

At this time, it is assessed no civilians were injured or killed in these airstrikes.

U.S. Africa Command will continue to work with its partners to transfer the responsibility for long-term security in Somalia from AMISOM to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States. In support of the Federal Government of Somalia, U.S. forces will use all effective and appropriate methods to assist in the protection of the Somali people, including partnered military counter-terror operations with the Federal Government of Somalia, AMISOM and Somali National Army forces.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab

Sources (10) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USSOM194-C

Incident date

February 11, 2019

Location

Tuwaareey, Lower Shabelle, Somalia

Geolocation

1.89512, 44.76052 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

US Africa Command initially reported that it had carried out two airstrikes in the vicinity of Janaale in the lower Shabelle region. AFRICOM stated that “the first airstrike on February 11 had killed eight militants and the second airstrike killed four militants” with a total of 12 killed.

AFRICOM added that “at this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in either airstrike.” However, in the second event – which locals placed at the village of Tuwaareey – up to 13 civilians were locally reported killed. AFRICOM later denied the claim.

Mareeg reported on February 12th for example that according to Al-Shabaab, several civilian homes had been razed by the airstrikes and suggesting that civilian harm could have occurred, though no civilian casualties were known to have been reported at the time by the terror group.

In September 2019, TRT World Research Centre alleged that up to 13 civilians were killed in what was described as a joint air and ground operation.

“On 11 February, Fatima, a 48 year old mother of 10, witnessed a US drone strike, which destroyed her home and property in the vicinity of Tuwaareey, a farming vicinity near Jannaale in the southeastern Lower Shebelle region of Somalia. Fatima was preparing breakfast on a Monday morning when airstrikes struck her village. TRT World Research Centre documented the following testimony:

‘I was at home and preparing breakfast for my children at 7:00 am on a Monday morning. The attack caused huge damage to the area.’ At the time of speaking with Fatima, the witness said ‘my daughter and her two kids are still missing since that day. I do not know if they are alive or not. My daughter was living in the small village next to mine, which are both in the same vicinity. My farmland was destroyed, including
my harvested grain’. At the time of investigating the incident for this report, it was not possible to verify what happened to Fatima’s daughter or two grandchildren.

Fatima told TRT World Research Centre that she fled the village following the attack, and traveled to an IDP camp. In a separate interview in June 201921, Fatima reiterated
that she is still not in touch with her daughter and two grandchildren. It is possible that they may have been killed in the attack or fled the area to a different IDP camp. Fatima estimated that some 10 civilians were killed in the airstrikes – among them were Fatima’s younger sister and two of her cousins (one male and one female).

‘The strikes took place in Tuuwaarreey village, near to Jannaale town. There were no Al Shabaab around us people – farmers. The attack was conducted with a ‘Diyaarad’
(plane) and the civilians were being targeted. There was an Al Shabaab base nearby to our village, but they were not present at the time of the attack’, Fatima continued…

A local news media outlet, Goobjoog News, reported lethal activity in the vicinity of Janaale in the Lower Shabelle region on the 11 February 2019. ‘The attack took place at midnight as Somali army officials confirmed to us. The report added that military planes first conducted airstrikes on an Al Shabaab base, followed by a direct gun-fight between Al Shabaab fighters and Somali soldiers who landed after the strike.’ In addition, the report states “[t]here is no confirmation of the casualties caused by this strike, but the Somali army and the U.S. soldiers have been recently launching operations against Al Shabaab.’

“TRT World Research Centre’s investigation finds evidence contrary to that of AFRICOM’s assessment that no civilians were killed in the strike. The testimony
of Fatima presents that a possible 13 civilians were killed based on testimony. Based on the interview documented for this incident, the US may have failed in taking adequate precautions to avoid any civilian casualties while pursuing Al-Shabaab. There was a lack of precision in targeting, notably in a location that is not declared a battlefield. It is likely that if the US had not executed this lethal action, the civilians would not have been affected. Under international law, indiscriminate attacks or injury to non-combatants may equate to war crimes. Thus, the US government and relevant departments must ensure an independent and impartial investigation is conducted on this lethal action.”

In a subsequent FOIA response obtained by US reporter Joshua Eaton in May 2019, AFRICOM gave the location of the strike as being in the vicinity of Janalle, and said the targets had been al Shabaab fighters.

In April 2020, AFRICOM denied civilian harm in this event: “September 23, 2019, AFRICOM received a report from a foreign non-government organization claiming thirteen (13) civilians were killed as a result of a U.S. airstrike in the vicinity of Janaale, Somalia, on February 11, 2019. AFRICOM received a duplicate allegation of this incident on January 21, 2020, from a foreign non-government organization. After review, the allegations were assessed to be unsubstantiated because no U.S. military strike took place at the alleged time and location.”

Airwars reached out to US Africa Command for further clarification on possible involvement of US ground forces. AFRICOM confirmed that “the term ‘strike’ is defined as U.S. munitions of any type employed by U.S. military forces under the authority of U.S. Africa Command. This includes both air and ground operations.”

An official also provided the following responses:

“1) Were US ground forces present as alleged?

USAFRICOM forces were not in the vicinity of where the alleged civilian harm occurred.

2) Did US ground forces engage in kinetic actions?

USAFRICOM executed a kinetic strike on behalf of our Somali partners in self-defense, but that strike occurred at a different time and location than the airstrikes allegedly causing civilian harm.

3) Are any US kinetic ground actions believed to have contributed to civilian harm?

USAFRICOM ground forces did not contribute to the alleged civilian harm.”

An OCCRP investigation later looked into the collection of ISR: “On February 1 and 5, 2019, a contractor-owned Gulfstream jet flew repeatedly over a small area in Lower Shabelle, about 30 kilometers west of Mogadishu. It returned to the area on March 9. The plane had a particular flight pattern — near-perfect circles — and was likely collecting data with its specialized sensors, according to experts on the subject.

On February 6 and 11, and again on March 11, U.S. airstrikes hit areas the plane apparently surveyed.”

The incident occured at approximately 7:00 am local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (6)

  • Sister of Fatima Adult female killed
  • Cousin of Fatima Adult female killed
  • Cousin of Fatima Adult male killed
  • Daughter of Fatima female Missing presumed dead killed
  • Granddaughter of Fatima Child female Missing presumed dead killed
  • Grandchild of Fatima Child Missing presumed dead killed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Counter-Terrorism Action (Ground)
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    10 – 13
  • (0–2 children2 women1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    0–1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    4–12

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention that the strike targeted civilian homes in the vicinity of the village Tuwaareey (or Tuaarey), close to the town Janaale. Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the precise location of the strike. The coordinates for the village Tuwaareey are: 1.89512, 44.76052.

United States Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    United States Armed Forces
  • United States Armed Forces position on incident
    Non credible / Unsubstantiated
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    No Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None

Civilian casualty statements

United States Armed Forces
  • Apr 30, 2020
  • Apr 27, 2020
  • September 23, 2019, AFRICOM received a report from a foreign non-government organization claiming thirteen (13) civilians were killed as a result of a U.S. airstrike in the vicinity of Janaale, Somalia, on February 11, 2019. AFRICOM received a duplicate allegation of this incident on January 21, 2020, from a foreign non-government organization. After review, the allegations were assessed to be unsubstantiated because no U.S. military strike took place at the alleged time and location.

  • 1) Were US ground forces present as alleged? USAFRICOM forces were not in the vicinity of where the alleged civilian harm occurred. 2) Did US ground forces engage in kinetic actions? USAFRICOM executed a kinetic strike on behalf of our Somali partners in self-defense, but that strike occurred at a different time and location than the airstrikes allegedly causing civilian harm. 3) Are any US kinetic ground actions believed to have contributed to civilian harm? USAFRICOM ground forces did not contribute to the alleged civilian harm.

Original strike reports

United States Armed Forces

In support of the Federal Government of Somalia's consistent efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. Africa Command conducted two airstrikes targeting al-Shabaab in the vicinity of Janaale, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 11, 2019.

Precision airstrikes support Somali partners’ ongoing efforts to reduce al-Shabaab safe havens, degrade the terrorists’ infrastructure, and destroy terrorist equipment. Airstrikes complement our Somali partners’ successes against al-Shabaab, and are one component of our combined effort to protect the Somali people from terrorism.

“Our security partners are actively executing operations in Somalia to increase the span of governance of the Federal Government of Somalia,” said Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Gregg Olson, U.S. Africa Command director of operations. “Somali security forces are effectively targeting al-Shabaab forces to create space for governance and development in Somalia.”

The airstrikes on February 11 were executed as Somali forces were leading an operation in an area where al-Shabaab conducts terrorist activities, as well as exploits the local populace for illegal taxes. Somali-led operations like this are vital to maintaining pressure on the terrorist network.

U.S. Africa Command currently assesses the first airstrike on February 11 killed eight militants and the second airstrike killed four militants.

At this time, it is assessed no civilians were injured or killed in either airstrike.

We will continue to work with our partners to transfer the responsibility for long-term security in Somalia from AMISOM to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States, and U.S. forces will use all effective and appropriate methods to protect the Somali people from terrorists.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Counter-Terrorism Action (Ground)
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    10 – 13
  • (0–2 children2 women1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    0–1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    4–12

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USSOM192

Incident date

February 8, 2019

Location

Road between Araare and Kobon, Lower Juba, Somalia

Geolocation

0.031300, 42.695155 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Neighbourhood/area level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Neighbourhood/area

Airwars assessment

US Africa Command reported that the previous day, it had carried an airstrike in the vicinity of Kobon, near the city of Kismayo.

AFRICOM added that “at this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in either airstrike.”

AFRICOM did not specify the number of belligerents killed, although AP reported that eight “extremists” were killed. According to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, this number was later also confirmed to them via email from AFRICOM.

However, citing local officials, reporter Abdi Rahman Adani claimed in a tweet that “Jubaland military officials say 32 #AlShabaab militants were killed in two US airstrikes at the road connects Araare and Kaban village in lower Jubba on Friday night at 7pm, local time. #Somalia”.

Xinhua placed the militant death toll at 30 – and also placed the attack at Jamaame based on comments from Somali officials the following day: “Said Jogsade, Jubaland’s operational spokesman told journalists that Somali National Armed Forces backed by Jubba land forces and U.S. Africa Command killed 30 al-Shabab extremists in an operation in Jamame town in Lower Jubba. ‘The joint forces conducted offensives in Jamame killing 30 al-Shabab fighters. We will intensify the operations to root out the terrorists from our region,’ Jogsade said.

“Residents in nearby towns said they heard the sound of heavy weapons. ‘We heard blasts in Jamame and learnt that al-Shabab fighters in the town were attacked by government forces,’ Jibril Adam, a resident told Xinhua.”

In a subsequent FOIA response obtained by US reporter Joshua Eaton in May 2019, AFRICOM again gave the location of the strike on this date as being in the vicinity of Kobon, and said the targets had been al Shabaab fighters.

The incident occured at approximately 7:00 pm local time.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Belligerents reported killed
    8–32

Sources (3) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention that the strike took place in the vicinity of the village Kobon, close to the city Kismayo. Reporter Abdi Rahman Adani claimed the strike targeted the road between the villages Kobon and Araare. The coordinates for Kobon are: 0.03586, 42.704521; the coordinates for Araare are: 0.026888, 42.682822. The coordinates for the road between the two villages are: 0.031300, 42.695155. One source (Xinhua) also mentioned the bigger town Jamaame, which is around 6 kilometers northeast of Kobon (coordinates: 0.06978, 42.748066).

  • The road between the villages Araare and Kobon

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

United States Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    United States Armed Forces
  • United States Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

United States Armed Forces

In support of the Federal Government of Somalia's consistent efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. Africa Command conducted an airstrike targeting al-Shabaab in the vicinity of Kobon, Somalia on February 8, 2019.

This precision airstrike was executed to degrade al-Shabaab capabilities, reduce the threat against Somali partners, and prevent al-Shabaab from plotting terror attacks throughout the region.

At this time, it is assessed no civilians were injured or killed in this airstrike.

“The Federal Government of Somalia is aggressively disrupting al-Shabaab activities and sending a strong message about their commitment to degrading this terror group’s ability to operate in the region,” said Air Force Brig. Gen. Robert Huston, U.S.Africa Command deputy director of operations.” These persistent and precision strikes help create enhanced security in Somalia while signaling an ability to swiftly reach al-Shabaab and disrupt their operations at a moment’s notice.”

Alongside Somali and international partners, U.S. Africa Command is committed to preventing al-Shabaab from taking advantage of safe havens from which they can build capacity and attack the people of Somalia.

We will continue to work with our partners to transfer the responsibility for long-term security in Somalia from AMISOM to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States, and U.S. forces will use all effective and appropriate methods to protect the Somali people from terrorists.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Belligerents reported killed
    8–32

Sources (3) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USSOM191

Incident date

February 7, 2019

Location

Bariire, Lower Shabelle, Somalia

Geolocation

2.04707, 44.89832 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

US Africa Command reported that it had carried out an airstrike on the previous day “in the vicinity of Bariire, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 7, 2019.”

According to the official statement, “This precision airstrike was executed after our Somali partners were engaged by al-Shabaab militants as they conducted an operation to disrupt al-Shabaab efforts to illegally tax and intimidate civilians in the area.”

AFRICOM reported that it “currently assesses the airstrike on February 7 killed four militants.” AFRICOM mantained that the strike was carried out after “Somali partners” were attacked by members of Al-Shabaab. It added that “at this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in either airstrike.”

According to Danan Radio, the attack occurred around midnight.

The incident occured at approximately 12:01 am local time.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    4

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention that the strike took place in the vicinity of the village Bariire, for which the generic coordinates are: 2.04707, 44.89832. Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

United States Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    United States Armed Forces
  • United States Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

United States Armed Forces

Al-Shabaab Degraded by U.S., Federal Government of Somalia
In support of the Federal Government of Somalia's increased efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. Africa Command conducted two airstrikes in separate engagements in the last 48 hours. The first airstrike occurred in the vicinity of Gandarshe, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 6, 2019. U.S. Africa Command also conducted an airstrike in the vicinity of Bariire, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 7, 2019.
By U.S. AFRICA COMMAND PUBLIC AFFAIRS, United States Africa CommandStuttgart, GermanyFeb 08, 2019
In support of the Federal Government of Somalia's increased efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. Africa Command conducted two airstrikes in separate engagements in the last 48 hours. The first airstrike occurred in the vicinity of Gandarshe, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 6, 2019. U.S. Africa Command also conducted an airstrike in the vicinity of Bariire, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 7, 2019.
Encouraged and supported by the Federal Government of Somalia, precision airstrikes such as these support Somali security forces efforts to protect the Somali people from terrorism while creating opportunities for increased governance to take hold.
“The Federal Government of Somalia is placing persistent pressure on al-Shabaab and its’ affiliates, working to create conditions for enhanced security and stability,” said Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Gregg Olson, U.S. Africa Command director of operations. “They continue to demonstrate a strong commitment to degrading al-Shabaab.”
U.S. Africa Command currently assesses the airstrike on February 6 killed 11 militants.
U.S. Africa Command currently assesses the airstrike on February 7 killed four militants. This precision airstrike was executed after our Somali partners were engaged by al-Shabaab militants as they conducted an operation to disrupt al-Shabaab efforts to illegally tax and intimidate civilians in the area.
At this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in either airstrike.
U.S. Africa Command will continue to work with its partners to transfer the responsibility for long-term security in Somalia from AMISOM to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States, and U.S. forces will use all effective and appropriate methods to protect the Somali people, including partnered military counter-terror operations with the Federal Government of Somalia, AMISOM and Somali National Army forces.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    4

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USSOM190

Incident date

February 6, 2019

Location

غندرشي, Gandarshe, Lower Shabelle, Somalia

Geolocation

1.8349369, 44.9668452 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

US Africa Command reported that two days previously, it had carried out an airstrike “in the vicinity of Gandarshe, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 6, 2019.”

AFRICOM reported that it “currently assesses the airstrike on February 6 killed 11 militants.”

It added that “at this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in either airstrike.”

In a subsequent FOIA response obtained by journalist Joshua Eaton in May 2019, AFRICOM again confirmed it had struck on this date what it says were al Shabaab fighters, in the vicinity of Gandarshe.

An OCCRP investigation later looked into the collection of ISR: “On February 1 and 5, 2019, a contractor-owned Gulfstream jet flew repeatedly over a small area in Lower Shabelle, about 30 kilometers west of Mogadishu. It returned to the area on March 9. The plane had a particular flight pattern — near-perfect circles — and was likely collecting data with its specialized sensors, according to experts on the subject.

On February 6 and 11, and again on March 11, U.S. airstrikes hit areas the plane apparently surveyed. AFRICOM said 11 militants were killed in the first strike near the ancient seaside town of Gandarshe, which was directly below the Gulfstream’s flightpath.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    11

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention that the strike took place in the vicinity of the village Gandarshe (غندرشي), for which the coordinates are: 1.8349369, 44.9668452. Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

United States Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    United States Armed Forces
  • United States Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

United States Armed Forces

In support of the Federal Government of Somalia's increased efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. Africa Command conducted two airstrikes in separate engagements in the last 48 hours. The first airstrike occurred in the vicinity of Gandarshe, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 6, 2019. U.S. Africa Command also conducted an airstrike in the vicinity of Bariire, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 7, 2019.

Encouraged and supported by the Federal Government of Somalia, precision airstrikes such as these support Somali security forces efforts to protect the Somali people from terrorism while creating opportunities for increased governance to take hold.

“The Federal Government of Somalia is placing persistent pressure on al-Shabaab and its’ affiliates, working to create conditions for enhanced security and stability,” said Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Gregg Olson, U.S. Africa Command director of operations. “They continue to demonstrate a strong commitment to degrading al-Shabaab.”

U.S. Africa Command currently assesses the airstrike on February 6 killed 11 militants.

U.S. Africa Command currently assesses the airstrike on February 7 killed four militants. This precision airstrike was executed after our Somali partners were engaged by al-Shabaab militants as they conducted an operation to disrupt al-Shabaab efforts to illegally tax and intimidate civilians in the area.

At this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in either airstrike.

U.S. Africa Command will continue to work with its partners to transfer the responsibility for long-term security in Somalia from AMISOM to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States, and U.S. forces will use all effective and appropriate methods to protect the Somali people, including partnered military counter-terror operations with the Federal Government of Somalia, AMISOM and Somali National Army forces.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    11

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USSOM188

Incident date

February 3, 2019

Location

غندرشي, Gandarshe, Lower Shabelle, Somalia

Geolocation

1.8349369, 44.9668452 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

US Africa Command reported that it had conducted an  airstrike “in the vicinity of Gandarshe, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 3, 2019”.

AFRICOM added that “at this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in either airstrike.” It did not specify whether any belligerent forces had been killed or injured.

According to CNN’s Ryan Browne, presumably citing AFRICOM sources, “the first strike destroyed a vehicle that had been utilized to transport al-Shabaab militants near Gandarshe.”

In a subsequent FOIA response obtained by journalist Joshua Eaton in May 2019, AFRICOM again confirmed it had struck what it says was an “al Shabaab Armored Personnel carrier (APC)”, in the vicinity of Gandarshe.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    1–5

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention that the strike took place in the vicinity of the village Gandarshe (غندرشي), for which the coordinates are: 1.8349369, 44.9668452. Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

United States Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    United States Armed Forces
  • United States Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

United States Armed Forces

In support of the Federal Government of Somalia's increased efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. Africa Command conducted two airstrikes in separate engagements in the last 48 hours. The first airstrike occurred in the vicinity of Gandarshe, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 3, 2019. U.S. Africa Command also conducted an airstrike in the vicinity of Leego, Bay Region, Somalia, on February 5, 2019.

These precision airstrikes support Somali partners’ ongoing efforts to reduce al-Shabaab safe havens, degrade the terrorists’ infrastructure, and destroy terrorist equipment. Strikes complement our Somali partners’ successes against al-Shabaab, and are one component of our combined efforts to protect the Somali people from terrorism.

At this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in either airstrike.

U.S. Africa Command will continue to work with its partners to transfer the responsibility for long-term security in Somalia from AMISOM to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States, and U.S. forces will use all effective and appropriate methods to protect the Somali people, including partnered military counter-terror operations with the Federal Government of Somalia, AMISOM and Somali National Armyforces.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    1–5

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

USSOM186

Incident date

February 1, 2019

Location

غندرشي, Gandarshe, Lower Shabelle, Somalia

Geolocation

1.8349369, 44.9668452 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

AFRICOM reported that the previous day it had “conducted an airstrike targeting al-Shabaab fighters in the vicinity of Gandarshe, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 1, 2019.”

It added that “at this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in this airstrike.” However, AFRICOM claimed that the strike had “killed 13 militants.” According to the release, “Al-Shabaab has previously used Gandarshe, 30 miles southwest of Mogadishu, as a staging area for attacks including vehicle borne improvised explosive devices that threaten the capital and its residents.”

Adow Mohamed, a Somali National Army (SNA) captain in the Lower Shebelle region confirmed the airstrike to the Anadolu news agency over the phone.

In a subsequent FOIA response obtained by journalist Joshua Eaton in May 2019, AFRICOM again confirmed it had struck what it says were al Shabaab fighters, in the vicinity of Gandarshe.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    13

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention that the strike took place in the vicinity of the village Gandarshe (غندرشي), for which the coordinates are: 1.8349369, 44.9668452. Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

United States Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Known belligerent
    United States Armed Forces
  • United States Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

United States Armed Forces

To support the Federal Government of Somalia's continued efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. Africa Command conducted an airstrike targeting al-Shabaab fighters in the vicinity of Gandarshe, Lower Shebelle Region, Somalia, on February 1, 2019.

Al-Shabaab has previously used Gandarshe, 30 miles southwest of Mogadishu, as a staging area for attacks including vehicle borne improvised explosive devices that threaten the capital and its residents. On December 15 and 16, six U.S. airstrikes killed 62 al-Shabaab militants near Gandarshe, who were preparing for an attack on a Somali government military base in the region, and recently, a U.S. airstrike killed 24 militants in neighboring Hiran Region on January 30.

“Somali security forces continue to keep pressure on al-Shabaab, creating conditions for further political and economic development,” said Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Gregg Olson, U.S. Africa Command director of operations. “Somalia continues to demonstrate its commitment toward enhancing regional stability and security while degrading a transnational threat.”

U.S. Africa Command currently assesses this airstrike killed thirteen (13) militants.

At this time, it was assessed no civilians were injured or killed in this airstrike.

U.S. Africa Command will continue to work with its partners to transfer the responsibility for long-term security in Somalia from AMISOM to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States, and U.S. forces will use all effective and appropriate methods to protect the Somali people, including partnered military counter-terror operations with the Federal Government of Somalia, AMISOM and Somali National Army forces.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Declared strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Known attacker
    United States Armed Forces
  • Suspected target
    Al-Shabaab
  • Belligerents reported killed
    13

Sources (4) [ collapse]