Airstrike in Somalia kills 52 al-Shabab extremists, says US military

The U.S. military on Saturday said it had carried out its deadliest airstrike in Somalia in months, killing 52 al-Shabab extremists after a “large group” mounted an attack on Somali forces.

The U.S. Africa Command said the airstrike occurred near Jilib in Middle Juba region. There were no reports of Americans killed or wounded.

The U.S. statement did not say whether any Somali forces were killed or wounded by the al-Qaida-linked extremists.

Al-Shabab via its Shahada news agency asserted that its attack on two Somali army bases killed at least 41 soldiers. It described the location as the Bar Sanjuni area near the port city of Kismayo.

The U.S. Africa Command made the announcement of the airstrike in a tweet. It said al-Shabab “uses portions of southern and central Somalia to plot and direct terror attacks, steal humanitarian aid, extort the local populace to fund its operations, and shelter radical terrorists.”

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