AFRICOM for March 16, 2020 – March 17, 2020
As part of an African Union Mission in Somalia and Somali National Army operation, and in coordination with the Federal Government of Somalia, U.S. Africa Command conducted five airstrikes against al-Shabaab terrorists near Janaale, Somalia, from March 16-17, 2020.
These precision airstrikes targeted members of the al-Qaida-aligned terrorist network as they massed and maneuvered in the vicinity of an ongoing Somali-led ground operation.
“We protect and remain committed to our partners – plain and simple,” said Maj. Gen. William Gayler, director of operations, U.S. Africa Command. “We eliminated terrorists posing a direct and immediate threat, allowing our African partners to maintain the momentum on the ground.”
Somali security forces continue to lead operations alongside AMISOM forces to increase security and seize ground from al-Shabaab.
Currently, we assess no civilians were injured or killed as a result of these airstrikes.
U.S. forces were in the area when these airstrikes occurred in order to advise and assist Somali and partner forces.
U.S. Africa Command continues to support the Government of Somalia by strengthening its security forces and promoting regional security, stability and prosperity. Al-Shabaab continues to conduct attacks in East Africa and will continue to threaten American and western interests in the region.
Concurrently, the command is building enduring relationships and strategic alliances in East Africa necessary to address future challenges and malign activity by near-peer competitors.
The U.S., by virtue of our capabilities, influence, and credibility, is uniquely postured to support Somali efforts and counter violent extremist threats.