US Strike in Somalia Kills Five Al-Shabaab Fighters

Al-Qaeda linked al-shabab recruits walk down a street on March 5, 2012 in the Deniile district of Somalian capital, Mogadishu, following their graduation. The walls of the former Shebab base in Baidoa, Somalia, are littered with rudimentary drawings of machine guns and tanks, a note reading "Fear God, don't write on these walls" and a sketch of an Al-Qaeda flag, homage to the rebel group's international allies. The crumbling building is now occupied by Ethiopian troops who nearly two weeks ago forced Shebab rebels out of Baidoa, their former Shebab stronghold and Somalia's third-largest city. AFP PHOTO/Mohamed ABDIWAHAB (Photo credit should read Mohamed Abdiwahab/AFP via Getty Images)
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The American military carried out a strike in a remote area of Somalia, killing five Al-Shabaab fighters, the US Africa Command said Thursday.

The “collective self-defense strike” near Bacadweyne, Somalia took place the previous day at the request of the country’s government, AFRICOM said in a statement.

“The initial assessment is the strike killed five Al-Shabaab fighters,” it added.

The leaders of Somalia and neighboring countries vowed at a summit earlier this month to “make the final push” against the Al-Qaeda linked Al-Shabaab, which has been waging an insurgency in the Horn of Africa nation for more than 15 years.

In recent months, the Somali army and local clan militias have retaken chunks of territory from the militants in an operation backed by US air strikes and an African Union force.

But Al-Shabaab still control parts of the countryside from where they have carried out numerous retaliatory attacks both in Somalia and in neighboring countries.