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First airstrike against Al Shabaab in Somalia under Biden’s mandate

15 minutes. The United States carried out a drone attack on militants of the Somali armed group Al Shabaab on Tuesday, in what is the first air strike against members of the Islamist militia linked to Al Qaeda since the term of President Joe Biden began.

Pentagon spokeswoman Cindi King said that the attack was carried out by military planes against the group’s fighters who were attacking members of the Danab Brigade, a US-trained Somali Army commando.

The military action was carried out this Tuesday at around 11 a.m. (local time).

It was carried out by the US Africa Command (AFRICOM) near the city of Galkayo, in the north of the country, King said.

This was reported by The New York Times.

He indicated that the American trainers were alerting the Danab commandos remotely when the militia attack occurred so “there were no US forces accompanying Somali forces during the operation“.

The Pentagon spokeswoman also noted that the fighting between Al Shabaab and Somali forces delayed the evaluation of the air strike against members of the armed group, the seventh in 2021 but the first since the Biden Administration began in January.

Drone attacks

Upon his arrival at the White House, Biden initiated a policy review on drone strikes and commando incursions outside of conventional war zones.

It imposed some time limits on these military actions.

The US president took this position after former President Donald Trump had relaxed the rules for drone attacks, The Hill reports.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said in March that any planned attack outside Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq should be presented to the White House.

“To ensure that the president has full visibility on the meaningful actions proposed,” he said.

In this case, King stressed that White House approval was not needed.

AFRICOM has the authority to carry out attacks in support of allied forces under what the military calls collective self-defense.

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