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The US Now Has More Freedom To Conduct Airstrikes In Somalia

The strikes will target Al-Shabab, a Somali Al-Qaeda affiliate.
Posted at 10:46 AM, Mar 31, 2017

President Donald Trump has OK'd offensive airstrikes in Somalia.

Trump's authorization essentially repeals the Obama administration's restrictions on drone strikes in the African country.

The strikes will target Al-Shabab, an Al-Qaeda affiliate operating in Somalia. Previously, the military was limited to striking only in areas with "active hostilities" or in certain self-defense situations.

The announcement comes as the U.S. investigates reports that its own airstrikes killed civilians in Syria and Iraq.

U.S. airstrikes in late March might have killed dozens of people near Raqqa, Syria.

And a separate airstrike in the country killed at least 40 people and injured dozens. Local rights groups say the strike targeted a mosque in northern Syria. U.S. officials denied that claim but said investigations into reports of civilian casualties were underway.

And in the city of Mosul, Iraq — which ISIS controls part of — U.S. strikes that Iraqi special forces requested might have killed as many as 200 civilians.