AFRICOM reported on the same day that it had “conducted an airstrike targeting al-Shabaab militants approximately 30 miles southwest of Mogadishu, Somalia, on May 31”.
It added: “We currently assess no civilians were injured or killed in this airstrike.” However, AFRICOM claimed that the airstrike killed “twelve (12) terrorists”.
In a subsequent FOIA response obtained by journalist Joshua Eaton in May 2019, AFRICOM confirmed it had struck on this date what it says were “al-Shabaab Fighters”, in the vicinity of Merka District, Somalia.
The local time of the incident is unknown.
Sources (4) [ collapse]
Reports of the incident mention that the strike took place in the area 30 miles southwest of Mogadishu, for which the generic coordinates are: 1.834123, 44.945021. A subsequent FOIA pointed to the vicinity of Marka district as a location. The area 30 miles southwest of Mogadishu is indeed located in Marka district (for which the generic coordinates are: 1.755033, 44.744791). Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.
US Forces Assessment:
Original strike reports
U.S. Conducts Airstrike in Support of the Federal Government of Somalia
In coordination with the Federal Government of Somalia, U.S. Forces conducted an airstrike targeting al-Shabaab militants approximately 30 miles southwest of Mogadishu, Somalia, on May 31, killing twelve (12) terrorists.
We currently assess no civilians were killed in this airstrike.
U.S. forces will continue to use all authorized and appropriate measures to protect U.S. citizens and to disable terrorist threats. This includes partnering with AMISOM and Somali National Security Forces (SNSF) in combined counterterrorism operations and targeting terrorists, their training camps, and their safe havens throughout Somalia and the region.