US Africa Command has confirmed that more than 100 al-Shabaab militants have been eliminated in the latest US airstrike. CNN reports that the target was a camp in somalia located northwest of Mogadishu, and the strike was undertaken by a manned aircraft. It was against terror groups that had links with al-Qaeda and ISIS.

The Africa Command and the Pentagon have resorted to these airstrikes because the location of the targets are identified, and the strikes would bring in positive results. The increase in the number of strikes in Somalia, Libya, and Yemen, is attributed to intelligence reports.

It may be recalled that in October, a double truck bomb had killed nearly 300 innocent people in Mogadishu, the capital.

US presence in Somalia

US troops have been positioned in Somalia to train the local forces, and extend assistance to them on various aspects of counter-terrorism activities. The number of persons have nearly doubled since March 2017, and include not only military personnel but also civilians and contractors. The US Africa Command has revealed this.

According to estimates, there are thousands of al-Shabaab militants still active while the number of ISIS operatives in the country has reduced to a few hundred. Samantha Reho, an Africa Command spokesperson, has justified the US airstrikes saying that the intention is to keep up the pressure on the terror networks and take appropriate action when the situation is favorable.

Lt. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, director of the Joint Staff, has elaborated that the planners take advantage of a number of factors before launching a strike which would be within the law of armed conflict.

Terror attacks must be contained

The Pentagon has acknowledged that a total of 29 US airstrikes have been carried out against the al-Shabaab militants till date in the current year, and seven of these have taken place in the first fortnight of November.

The decision to undertake such offensives is based on the new authority that has been granted by Donald Trump.

By virtue of this authority, the commander of Africa Command can conduct airstrikes to support the local troops who are engaged in fighting terrorists in Somalia. This is a change in the US policy because previously such strikes were authorized only for self-defense of the American forces.

Donald Trump is determined to eliminate terror modules affiliated to al-Qaeda and ISIS and has introduced a number of measures like the travel ban to safeguard the interests of America. In the process, he has taken certain decisions that have cornered the terrorists, and have sent them scurrying for cover. Such stern actions can help to reduce terrorism which is a matter of concern for the whole world.