US airstrike in Somalia kills 10 al-Shabab militants

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JOHANNESBURG — The U.S. military says it has carried out an airstrike in southwestern Somalia that killed 10 members of the al-Shabab extremist group.

The U.S. Africa Command statement says the airstrike occurred Wednesday near Dheerow Sanle to “diminish al-Shabab’s freedom of movement and to increase pressure on the terrorist network.”

The statement says no civilians were injured or killed.

This is the first reported U.S. airstrike of the year in Somalia. The U.S. carried out at least 47 such strikes last year in the Horn of Africa nation.

The al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab continues to control large parts of the country’s southern and central regions and carry out deadly bombings against high-profile targets in the capital, Mogadishu.

The U.S. has sharply increased the number of airstrikes since President Donald Trump took office.

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