Sunday, 5 January 2020

Terrorists Attack US Military Base in Kenya (Details,)

NAIROBI — Al-Shabab militants launched a predawn attack on a shared U.S. and Kenyan military airstrip located on Kenya's coast near the border with Somalia, officials said, adding that the assault was repulsed.

Residents and tourists in the Lamu region reported seeing a plume of smoke and hearing ongoing gunfire starting at 3:30 a.m. which continued into the midmorning hours.

U.S. military personnel train Kenyan soldiers at a base attached to the airstrip, known as Camp Simba, and the U.S. military uses the airstrip for aerial missions against al-Shabab in Somalia. The U.S. Africa Command said in a statement that there had been an attack which it repelled together with Kenyan forces and described the situation “fluid” with the airfield still being secured.

Kenyan Defence Forces said the attack took place around 5:30 a.m.

“The attempted breach was successfully repulsed. Four terrorist bodies have so far been found. The airstrip is safe,” said spokesman Lt. Col. Paul Njuguna. “Arising from the unsuccessful breach, a fire broke out affecting some of the fuel tanks located at the airstrip. The fire has been put under control and standard security procedures are now ongoing.”

A Kenyan police reported cited by the Associated Press also said that two airplanes, one Kenyan and one American, along with two U.S. helicopters and other vehicles, were destroyed in the attack. The U.S. military statement acknowledged that initial reports indicated some damage to infrastructure and equipment.

For its part, al-Shabab said it had inflicted “severe casualties” on both American and Kenyan forces and confirmed it had destroyed U.S. aircraft and vehicles.

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