US planning to hone Somalia drone attacks
MOGADISHU, Somalia, August 20, 2015 (Garowe Online)-As part of East Africa counterterrorism efforts, United States is planning to intensify drone strikes on Al Shabaab-controlled territories in war-torn Somalia, Garowe Online reports.
Top Pentagon officials hinted at boost in anti-terror activities by the unmanned aircraft that left key Al Shabaab leaders including its Chief Ahmed Abdi Godane dead.
Former Somali Defense Minister Abdihakin Fiqi welcomed increase in drone attacks, acknowledging that US military and Somalia have shared intelligence and monitoring activities in the past.
In September, 2014 Al Shabaab suffered operational loss following the killing of its Chief Ahmed Abdi Godane in US airstrike on encampment in southern Somalia.
Fiqi told VOA Somali Service that drones minimized civilian casualties and operated with high precision over the course of known air raids inside Somalia.
United States remains strategic security partner, helping UN-backed national government weaken militants grip on very few areas in central and southern Somalia.
Somali government forces alongside African Union peacekeepers have secured victories against Al Shabaab militants and took back control of key towns in southwestern Somalia.
On Sunday, Ethiopian attack helicopters targeted four Al Shabaab technicals with missiles in Gadon village, 4km off Masagaway in Galgadud region.