US To Investigate Deaths Of 5 Farmers In Somalia Operation
US Africa Command has reacted to reports of the killing of 5 civilian on Wednesday night in a combined US-SNA raid in Maalinka village near Afgoye in Somalia's Lower Shabelle region. A statement issued by USAfricom said investigation will be launched to ascertain if the five killed were civilians or AlShabaab militants. "U.S. forces, in an advise-and-assist capacity, partnered in a Somali-led operation to disrupt and degrade al-Shabaab's terrorist network near Bulcida, Somalia, May 9. We are aware of reports alleging civilian casualties resulting from this operation, and we take these reports seriously" the statement said. "As with any allegations of civilian casualties we receive, U.S. Africa Command will review any information it has about the incident, including any relevant information provided by third parties. If the information supporting the allegation is determined to be credible, USAFRICOM will determine the next appropriate step" the statement added. The five have been identified by local elders as farm workers shot dead at a banana plantation. The bodies of the dead were transported to Mogadishu by Somali security agents while the injured is undergoing specialised treatment. The raid targeted marked Al-Shabaab commanders.Three militants were seized by the US forces. Somalia government has yet to issue a statement on the killing of the five civilians. In 2017 a similar attack targeting AlShabaab militants in Barire killed ten farmers.