American military forces launched an operation in Somalia on Monday against the Qaeda-linked militant network the Shabab, defense officials said.
Rear Adm. John F. Kirby, the Pentagon press secretary, said that officials were still “assessing the results of the operation, and will provide additional information as and when appropriate.” …
A senior American official, who asked not to be named because of the sensitivity of the operation, said it had been carried out with Somali partners against “a senior Shabab operative.”
The Pentagon and the State Department have been supporting a 22,000-member African force that has driven the Shabab from their former strongholds in Mogadishu, the capital, and other urban centers, and continues to battle the extremists in their mountain and desert redoubts.
The United States now has a total of about 100 Special Operations forces operating in different parts of the country, both in training-advisory roles and in an operational role. Most, if not all, of those forces are Navy SEALS.
Officials did not say where the operation on Monday occurred or how it was carried out. But last October, Navy SEALS descended on the port town of Baraawe, which is a Shabab stronghold.