Soldier killed in Somalia ID'd as 8-year Army veteran from Chandler


Somalia's al-Shabaab has claimed responsibility for an attack in which a USA commando was killed and four others were wounded when they came under fire in the country.

US President Donald Trump offered his condolences on Twitter.

Friday's joint operation, part of a multi-day mission including about 800 Somali and Kenyan troops, aimed to clear al-Shabab from contested areas.

-Somali force north of Kismayo came as USA military officials have been considering plans to cut the number of US special operations forces deployed to Africa.

Meanwhile, the U.S. military's Africa Command on Friday dismissed allegations that a Somali-led raid conducted with United States assistance had resulted in the deaths of civilians.

The attack occurred in the Jubaland region, where a large force comprising about 800 Somali, Kenyan and U.S. troops were clearing a large area of Al Qaeda-affiliated Al Shabab fighters.

US troops with Somali and Kenyan forces came under mortar and small-arms fire Friday in Jubaland.

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The report found that not only was the Niger mission plagued by problems up and down the chain of command but that the US and Nigerien forces were also done in by an unexpected and unprecedented show of force by militants aligned with the Islamic State terror group.

This was the first public announcement of a USA military combat death in Africa since four US servicemembers were killed in a militant ambush in the West African nation of Niger in October. The al-Shabab group was blamed for the truck bombing in Mogadishu in October that killed more than 500 people and raised concerns about al-Shabab's ability to build ever-larger explosives.

In 2011, the armed group was pushed out of the capital, Mogadishu, by Somali troops backed by hundreds of soldiers from the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) after months of deadly street battles.

The group used to control most parts of the country, but since 2010, its fighters have been removed from most major towns and cities.

Al-Shabab quickly claimed responsibility for the attack on Telegram via its Shahada News Agency. The injured have been treated and discharged to a U.S.embassy medical team in Kenya, the U.S. Africa command said Saturday.

This is the second USA military fatality in Somalia in the past year.