A U.S. servicemember and two American contractors for the Pentagon have been killed on the Kenya Protection Pressure Army Base utilized by U.S. forces Sunday after a pre-dawn assault by the al-Shabab extremist group, officers mentioned.
As well as, two “Division of Protection members” have been wounded however secure and crews evacuated them from the airfield, U.S. Africa Command officers mentioned with out elaborating on the injured. They mentioned six contractor-operated civilian plane suffered injury within the assault.
5 militants from the fear roup, which is linked to Al Qaeda, have been killed within the assault, in accordance with Kenyan navy officers.
U.S. Africa Command mentioned the assault on the Manda Bay compound, which U.S. forces have used to coach African servicemembers and shield U.S. pursuits within the space, concerned “oblique and small arms hearth.”
“After an preliminary penetration of the perimeter, Kenya Protection Forces and U.S. Africa Command repelled the al-Shabab assault,” the assertion mentioned.
Al-Shabab, primarily based in close by Somalia, claimed accountability for the assault. It marked the primary recognized al-Shabab assault towards the U.S. in Kenya, a key base for combating one of many world’s most resilient extremist organizations.
The assault didn’t seem like in response to growing tensions in the Middle East following the U.S.-led airstrike at Baghdad Worldwide Airport that killed Iranian Gen. Qassim Soleimani, head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) elite Quds Pressure, early Friday.
A big plume of black smoke rose above the Kenyan airfield after the assault and folks dwelling within the space mentioned a automobile bomb had exploded. Lamu County Commissioner Irungu Macharia informed The Related Press that 5 suspects have been arrested and have been being interrogated.
Al-Shabab has launched a lot of assaults inside Kenya, together with towards civilian targets akin to buses, colleges and purchasing malls. The group has been the goal of a rising variety of U.S. airstrikes inside Somalia throughout President Trump’s administration.
The most recent assault got here simply over every week after an al-Shabab truck bomb in Mogadishu, Somalia, killed no less than 79 folks and U.S. airstrikes killed seven al-Shabab fighters in response.
Fox Information’ Jacqui Heinrich, Lucas Tomlinson and The Related Press contributed to this report.