Published: Sat, June 09, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

Somalia conflict: One US soldier killed, four wounded in firefight

Somalia conflict: One US soldier killed, four wounded in firefight

The incident occurred on Friday afternoon local-time.

The name of the fallen service member is being withheld pending next of kin notification, according to AFRICOM.

The attack occurred in Jubaland, where a large force comprising about 800 Somali, Kenyan and USA troops were working to clear a large area of Al-Qaeda-aligned Al-Shabaab fighters.

The US military official said "dozens" of US advisers participated in the overall operation, adding that while the al Qaeda affiliate al-Shabaab was known to have influence in the area, the local village was seen as friendly to the federal government.

The U.S. has about 1,000 special operations personnel in Africa. "The overarching goal in Somalia for the Department of Defense is to help the [government] provide a safe and secure environment for the Somali population".

Although one of the wounded Americans did not receive additional care after being treated in the field, the other three and the wounded local soldier were medically evacuated for follow-up care.

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The American forces were advising and assisting a large force of 800 Somali and Kenyan military forces that was part of a multi-day operation in an area of Jubaland located 217 miles southwest of the Somali capital of Mogadishu. Previous year there was also an incident in Mali in which two SEAL Team Six operators allegedly murdered a Green Beret on an embassy compound, reportedly over fears that he would expose a money laundering scheme that the SEALs were running. The condition of the injured American troops remains unknown.

Around 500 American forces are stationed throughout Somalia including a number of Special Operations units comprised Army Green Berets, Marine Raiders and Navy SEALS. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of the service members".

Miliken's was the first USA combat death in Somalia since 1993, when 18 US service members died battling Somali militiamen in an episode that became known as "Black Hawk Down". In October, four soldiers were killed in an ambush in Niger that raised questions about the military's strategy on the Continent.

The US Special Forces team were from the 3rd Special Forces Group, whose area of responsibility is in Africa, were constructing a new forward operating base.

"We are now far more prudent", Waldhauser said.

Earlier this month, al-Shabab claimed a series of attacks across the country, according to the SITE Intelligence group.

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