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10 June 2018, 12:20 | Darnell Patrick
One US Soldier Killed Four Injured in Attack in Somalia
A US special operations soldier was killed and four USA service members were wounded Friday in an "enemy attack" in Somalia, the USA military said. "Names are being withheld pending next of kin notification".
The attack occurred in Jubaland, where a large force comprising about 800 Somali, Kenyan and U.S. troops were working to clear a large area of Al-Qaeda-aligned Al-Shabaab fighters.
The U.S. troops were there to provide advice, assistance and aerial surveillance, the statement explained.
Three of the four USA service members were transferred for medical treatment while the fourth received medical care on the spot, the Washington Post reported. The fourth received sufficient medical care on the scene.
More than 500 American forces are partnering with African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM) and Somali national security forces in counterterrorism operations, and have conducted frequent raids and drone strikes on Al-Shabaab training camps throughout Somalia.
American forces have been back operating in Somalia for more than a decade.
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"My thoughts and prayers are with the families of our serviceman who was killed and his fellow servicemen who were wounded in Somalia", Trump tweeted.
Traditionally, US presidents have been wary of intervening in Somalia since 18 special forces soldiers died fighting militias in Mogadishu in 1993, a battle dramatised in the film Black Hawk Down.
US Africa Command, which oversees US operations on the continent, issued a statement later Friday confirming the incident, saying it took place in Jubaland, Somalia, about 350 kilometers southwest of the capital, Mogadishu. Some of al-Shabaab's top leaders have been killed in US drone strikes, but its operations have continued in Somalia despite the resistance.
The military did not say how many USA personnel were part of the operation. "The missions we actually accompany on have to have some type of strategic value in terms of the enemy we're going against".
The al-Qaida-linked al-Shabaab rural south and central regions, claimed responsibility. Though the group remains primarily a regional threat, the USA military has deployed to Somalia to prevent the extremists from operating freely in a safe haven.
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