Kismayo(Mogadishu24)-The Somali National Army with the support U.S. Africa Command Forces on Saturday killed 13 Al-Shabaab fighters in joint ground and air operations in Seiera area, 45 kilometres northwest of Kismayo, the administrative capital of Jubaland State in Somalia.

In a statement, the U.S. Africa command stated that the self-defense airstrike operation was conducted at the request of the Federal Government of Somalia.

The statement said that the US Africom forces were in support of Somali National Army forces who were engaged by the terrorist organization.

“At the request of the Federal Government of Somalia, U.S. Africa Command conducted a collective self-defense airstrike against al Shabaab terrorists in the vicinity of Seiera, Somalia, approximately 45 kilometres northwest of Kismayo,” reads the statement.

The Africa Command confirmed that they had killed 13 Al-Shabaab fighters and taken measures to prevent civilian casualties.

“Working with the Somali National Army, U.S. Africa Command’s initial assessment is that the airstrike killed 13 al Shabaab fighters and that no civilians were injured or killed. ,” the statement added.

The command noted that specific details regarding the units involved in the fight and equipment used will be kept confidential in order to ensure the operations security and effectiveness, while continuing to analyse the results of the operation to provide the appropriate information.

Moreover, the Somali National Army confirmed the attack in the lower Jubba region and claimed that they attacked Al-Shabaab fighters who were planning for an attack on civilians.

The SNA added that the forces destroyed Al-Shabaab’s hideouts, thwarted their offensive plans, and seized weapons.

“The National Army, with the support of the United States Air Force, carried out a military operation in the Lower Jubba region, killing 13 members of Al-Shabaab fighters. Our forces have also destroyed the militants’ hideouts where they were planning to launch an attack to harm civilians and seized their weapons,” reads the statement Somali Ministry of Defence.

Al-Shabaab’s affiliated media said that the group’s fighters inflicted huge casualties on the joint forces near Kismayo.

The U.S. African Command has been instrumental for the Somali National Army during the offensive operations against the Al-Shabaab militants group.

The Command has been providing training programs, advise, and equip partner forces to give them the tools that they need to degrade al-Shabaab’s terrorist operations.

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