US Africa Command reported that the day previously, it had “conducted two airstrikes targeting al-Shabaab militants in the vicinity of Baqdaad, Somalia, on January 7, 2019.”
AFRICOM stated that “At this time we assess no civilians were injured or killed in these airstrikes.” According to AFRICOM “four militants” were killed in the strikes.
AFRICOM added that “The airstrikes were conducted in collective self-defense of our Somali partners after they were engaged by al-Shabaab militants.”
Separately, Somalia’s national intelligence and security agency NISA tweeted that “In a planned operation to hunt down a commander of the militant group al-Shabaab, in the village of Baghdad in the Afgoye district, security forces killed four (4) members of Alshabab after their commander fled.” [translation]
Airwars has listed these as two separate confirmed strikes for this date, with four deaths assigned as a tally to this event and zero to the other. It is not however clear how many died in each event.
The local time of the incident is unknown.
Sources (6) [ collapse]
from sources (2) [ collapse]
Reports of the incident mention that the strike took place in the vicinity of the village Baqdaad in the Lower Juba region, for which the coordinates are: -0.04184, 42.654469. Due to limited information and satellite imagery available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.
US Forces Assessment:
Original strike reports
To support the Federal Government of Somalia's continued efforts to degrade al-Shabaab, U.S. forces conducted two (2) airstrikes targeting al-Shabaab militants in the vicinity of Baqdaad, Somalia, on January 7, 2019.
The airstrikes were conducted in collective self-defense of our Somali partners after they were engaged by al-Shabaab militants.
We currently assess the airstrikes killed four (4) militants.
At this time we assess no civilians were injured or killed in these airstrikes.
Alongside our Somali and international partners, we are committed to preventing al-Shabaab from taking advantage of safe havens from which they can build capacity and attack the people of Somalia. In particular, the group uses portions of southern and central Somalia to plot and direct terror attacks, steal humanitarian aid, extort the local populace to fund its operations, and shelter radical terrorists.
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.