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Senior Al Shabaab leader killed in US strike in Somalia

08 December 2015, 08:04

Mogadishu -A senior leader of Al Shabaab died in a US air strike in Somalia last week which also killed two other militants, the Pentagon said Monday.

Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said that removal of Abdirahman Sandhere "is a significant blow to al-Shabaab and reflects the painstaking work by our intelligence, military, and law enforcement professionals."

Sandhere, "also known as 'Ukash,' a senior leader of the al Qaeda-affiliated group al-Shabaab, is dead as a result of a US military air strike in Somalia undertaken on December 2" he said.

Read Also: KDF shootout with Al Shabaab leaves 3 soldiers injured

The Shabaab is fighting to overthrow the internationally-backed government in Mogadishu, which is protected by 22,000 African Union troops.

The group has lost much ground in recent years but remain a threat in both Somalia and neighboring Kenya, where they have carried out a series of attacks.

The movement is also facing growing divisions with some members shifting allegiance from Al-Qaeda to the Islamic State group.

The United States has led drone strikes in Somalia against Shabaab since 2011.

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