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US increases drone strikes against Islamic extremists in Somalia: report

Monday November 13, 2017

The U.S. carried out three drone strikes over a span of 24 hours in Somalia, according to a report from The Associated Press. 

The first strike occurred 250 miles southwest of the capital city of Mogadishu on Saturday afternoon, killing a militant from the Islamist extremist group al-Shabab. 


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The second strike, which took place 40 miles west of the capitol at 3 a.m. on Saturday, also targeted al-Shabab. 

The third strike took aim at the Islamic State group at 9 a.m. on Sunday, marking the second U.S. strike against the Islamic State in that country. 

The U.S. announced last Thursday it had killed "several militants" in a strike targeting al-Shabab 100 miles west of Mogadishu.

The strikes demonstrates the Trump administration's intensifying its fight against extremist groups in the nation. 

President Trump announced in March he would be giving the Pentagon more authority to carry out airstrikes in Somalia.

The Pentagon was previously only allowed to carry out strikes in defense of partnered forces.

Somalia was also not considered an active war zone prior to Trump's directive, and proposed strikes needed high-level, interagency vetting. The military also needed to prove the target posed a threat to Americans and that there was a near-certainty that no civilians would die.

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