US airstrike kills 60 al-Shabaab militants in Somalia

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It was the largest such US strike since one on Nov 21 2017 killed about 100 al Shabab fighters

A us military airstrike in central Somalia this weekend killed 60 Al Shabab fighters, the largest airstrike targeting the al-Qaeda affiliated terror group in more than a year, officials said Tuesday.

AFRICOM said that the airstrike did not injure or kill any civilians.

The US Africa Command (Africom) which oversees American troops on the African continent said this airstrike was the largest airstrike against the militants since November 21, 2017, when American forces killed about 100 terrorists in an airstrike against the insurgents' camp, Xinhua reported.

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The US has carried out more than three dozen air strikes, including drone strikes, this year against the al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabab, the deadliest Islamic extremist group in Sub-Saharan Africa. That is on pace to surpass last year's attacks against the group.

The strike took place Friday in the vicinity of Harardhere, about 300 miles northeast of Mogadishu, Somalia's capital, the military said in a statement.

They are also authorized to conduct offensive airstrikes in the southern part of the country targeting al Shabab safe havens.

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The United States has increased its military presence in Somalia since early 2017 to about 500 personnel after President Donald Trump approved expanded military operations.

Two officials tell The Associated Press that several missiles were fired Friday by two unmanned USA drones.

On Sept 21, Al-Shabab fighters attacked United States and Somalia troops north-west of Kismayo.

While some observers have questioned the effectiveness of airstrikes by the USA and Kenya and raised concerns about civilians being killed, the US military maintains that they "reduce al-Shabab's ability to plot future attacks, disrupt its leadership networks and degrade its freedom of maneuver within the region".

According to a report by Daily Monitor, the strike took place close to where the U.S. forces train Somali troops in partnership with the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).

At least two attacks involved U.S. aircraft.

American aircraft struck a lethal blow.

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