Shabaab, al-Qaeda’s regional branch in East Africa, assaulted the Manda Bay Airfield in Kenya earlier today. The extent of the damage is unclear, but at least some aircraft and equipment was set ablaze.
Yesterday’s assault marks at least the third time the SYL Hotel has been targeted by Shabaab in recent years.
The Department of Justice has unsealed an updated indictment against Jehad Serwan Mostafa, an American who has long served as a senior figure in Shabaab. The FBI alleges that Mostafa has played a role in Shabaab’s explosives department, among other jobs. In 2011, he served as an emissary for Ayman al-Zawahiri.
Shabaab claims this is the first time the organization has grabbed territory in Somaliland.
Two statements, which were released by al Qaeda’s general command and al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, were addressed to Shabaab yesterday in a coordinated messaging campaign.
Shabaab, just days after launching assaults on US and Italian troops, has now also claimed two IEDs on a US-trained Somali special forces unit.
No casualties were reported in either attack, however.
The camp is at least the second one ran by the Islamic State in Somalia’s northern Puntland region.