US kills al-Shabaab fighter in its first airsrike in two months

At least one al-Shabaab fighter has been killed in southern Somalia following US airsrike on Thursday.

The military has not carried out airsrikes against the militants in Somalia since last May.

In a statement on Thursday, US said in coordination with Somali government, its military conducted an airstrike targeting an al-Shabaab checkpoint in vicinity of Hantiwadaag of Lower Shabelle region.

“Al-Shabaab are using checkpoints to threaten, extort and restrict the movement of innocent people in Mogadishu and Lower Shabelle region,” said U.S. Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Bradford Gering, deputy director of operations, U.S. Africa Command. “Al-Shabaab’s actions continue to impede much needed economic development and progress.”

The statement said command’s initial assessment concluded this airstrike killed one terrorist and destroyed an al-Shabaab checkpoint.

U.S. stated that its mission in Africa currently assessed no civilians were injured or killed as a result of this airstrike.

U.S. Africa Command works to improve security conditions in Somalia in order to enhance governance and economic development. U.S. partnership with Somalia also helps prevent al-Shabaab’s ambitions to expand their reach, plot attacks, and further export violence.

“U.S. Africa Command continues to work with its Somali partners to transfer the responsibility for long-term security in Somalia to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States,” the statement reads in part.

The mission cast double on whether Somalia’s stability could be gained thorough military.

“U.S. and international partners recognized that stability in Somalia will not be achieved through purely military means. It requires providing programs and opportunity for the Somali people,” the statement said.

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