SOMALIA: US Sends $45 Million in Military Equipment to Fight Terrorists
The Pentagon is sending nearly $45 million in military equipment, including four small drones, to Uganda and Burundi to help battle the escalating terrorist threat in Somalia.
The latest aid, laid out in documents obtained by The Associated Press, comes as attacks intensify in Somalia against the al-Qaida-linked terror group al-Shabab, including an airstrike late Thursday that hit a militant convoy, killing a number of foreign fighters, according to officials there.
No nation immediately took responsibility for the latest airstrike, though U.S. aircraft have attacked militants in Somalia before.
U.S. officials, including incoming Pentagon chief Leon Panetta, have warned that the threat from al-Shabab is growing, and the group is developing stronger ties with the Yemen-based al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula. Panetta told lawmakers earlier this month that as the core al-Qaida leadership in Pakistan undergoes leadership changes, with the killing of Osama bin Laden, the U.S. needs to make sure that the group does not relocate to Somalia. The Associated Press (26 June 2011)