The United States has conducted 36 strikes in Yemen in 2018, roughly a quarter of last year’s record high of 131 strikes.
Since the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) began tracking district control three years ago, Afghan government controlled or influenced districts has declined 16% to 55.5%. In the same period, insurgent control/influence rose 5.5% and contested districts increased 11%.
Some 41 percent of the Afghan population resides in a contested district and more than nine percent reside in a Taliban controlled district, according to a new study by FDD’s Long War Journal.
Kunyo Barrow, where the most recent strike took place, is located in the Jubba River Valley, a stronghold of the al Qaeda affiliate.
A large concentration of Shabaab fighters a significant distance from its typical support zone in Jubba River Valley demonstrates the Al Qaeda affiliate’s resilience across Somalia.
This is the third time in the past month that US forces have conducted defensive airstrikes following Shabaab attacks.
The United States has conducted 24 strikes in Somalia in 2018, all of which have targeted Shabaab. The strike occurred near a town that was liberated by Somali forces just two days ago.
In response, the United States conducted a defensive airstrike which killed 18 terrorists. The United States has conducted a total of 23 strikes against Shabaab in Somalia in 2018.