World, Africa

Al-Shabaab kills 3 Americans in attack on Kenya base

AFRICOM vows to pursue those responsible for pre-dawn raid

Andrew Wasike   | 06.01.2020
Al-Shabaab kills 3 Americans in attack on Kenya base File Photo

NAIROBI, Kenya

The United States Africa Command (AFRICOM) confirmed Sunday that a U.S. service member and two Defense Department contractors were killed when al-Shabaab militants stormed a military base used by Kenyan and U.S. forces in Lamu county near Kenya’s border with Somalia.

“During an attack by al-Shabaab, an al-Qaeda group in East Africa, earlier today, one (1) U.S. service member and two (2) Department of Defense contractors were killed at a Kenya Defense Force Military Base in Manda Bay, Kenya,” AFRICOM said in a statement.

The U.S. said two Defense Department members were also wounded and that they are currently in stable condition and being evacuated.

AFRICOM Commander U.S. Army General Stephen Townsend said the names of the dead and wounded are being withheld until their next of kin are notified.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of our teammates who lost their lives today,” Townsend said in a news release.

“Alongside our African and international partners, we will pursue those responsible for this attack and al-Shabaab who seeks to harm Americans and U.S. interests. We remain committed to preventing al-Shabaab from maintaining a safe haven to plan deadly attacks against the U.S. homeland, East African and international partners”.

The pre-dawn attack involved indirect and small arms fire.

Kenyan defense forces announced they had successfully repulsed the attack, killing four militants.

AFRICOM confirmed that there was damage to infrastructure and other equipment, noting that reports indicated that six contractor-operated civilian aircraft were damaged to some degree.

It noted that a statement from al-Shabaab concerning the raid was exaggerated.

The Somali government has severely condemned the attack.

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