MOGADISHU, 9 January 2021 – An airstrike by American troops in Somalia has killed five al-Shabab fighters, including a senior commander, the US military said Friday.

AFRICOM, the US military operation, has said no civilians were injured or killed in the airstrike.

The name of the senior al-Shabab commander reportedly killed in the raid has not been provided.

US Troops in Somalia

US Troops in Somalia – Photo Voice of America

News reports said the commander killed had facilitated funding to al-Shabab, was involved in sourcing weapons for groups of the terror network based in southern parts of Somalia.

The commander was also reportedly active in training and supplying fighters to al-Shabab as well as in the provision of explosives and other military gear.

According to the BBC, the commander “was also thought to be involved in a previous attack against US and Somalia forces near the town of Saha Wayne”.

Locating Somalia in the Horn of Africa

Locating Somalia in the Horn of Africa – Source Hiraan Online

The airstrike came just days before American troops are due to withdraw from Somalia and on the same day Somali military said they had killed at least eight al-Shabab fighters in a separate operation.

Last December, US President Donald Trump ordered the withdrawal of most of the 700 US troops in Somalia.

The withdrawal is ongoing under the code name Operaton Octave Quartz.

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