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US-targeted IS in Somalia could be a 'significant threat'

FOX News

MOGADISHU, Somalia – The Islamic State group's growing presence in Somalia could become a "significant threat" if it attracts fighters fleeing collapsing strongholds in Syria and Iraq, experts say, and already it seems to be influencing local al-Shabab extremists to adopt tactics like beheadings. The U.S. military this month carried out its first drone strikes against IS fighters in Somalia, raising questions about the strength of the group that emerged just two years ago. A second strike targeted the fighters on Sunday, with the U.S. saying "some terrorists" were killed. The Islamic State group burst into public view in Somalia late last year as dozens of armed men seized the port town of Qandala in the northern Puntland region, calling it the seat of the "Islamic Caliphate in Somalia." They beheaded a number of civilians, causing more than 20,000 residents to flee, and held the town for weeks until they were forced out by Somali troops, backed by U.S. military advisers.


US carries out 3 drone strikes against extremists in Somalia

FOX News

MOGADISHU, Somalia – U.S. forces say they have carried out three drone strikes within 24 hours in Somalia, stepping up their campaign against the Islamic extremist rebels of al-Shabab and the Islamic State group. The strikes by unmanned drones killed several extremist fighters, a spokeswoman for the U.S. military command in Africa told The Associated Press Sunday. With these three attacks, the U.S. has now carried out 26 attacks in Somalia against extremist targets in 2017, she said. The latest U.S. strikes were carried out in coordination with Somalia's government, she said. The first strike happened Saturday at approximately 4:30 p.m. local Somalia time and it killed one fighter for the extremists group, al-Shabab, said a U.S. Africa command statement.


US drone strike in Somalia against al-Shabab kills 'several'

FOX News

MOGADISHU, Somalia – The United States military said Saturday it has carried out a new drone strike against the al-Shabab extremist group in Somalia, killing "several" militants. A statement by the U.S. Africa Command said the strike was carried out Friday night in Lower Shabelle region, about 20 miles (32 kilometers) north of the capital, Mogadishu. It came a day after another strike in the Bay Region, about 100 miles west of Mogadishu. Friday's airstrike was the 23rd the U.S. military has carried out this year against the al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab and the far smaller Islamic State group in Somalia. The Trump administration earlier this year approved expanded military operations against extremists in the Horn of Africa nation.


Almost all American ISIS fighters unaccounted for, sparking fears they could slip through cracks and return

FOX News

'White Widow' Sally Jones reportedly killed in U.S. drone strike; Trace Gallagher reports from Los Angeles. When it came to recruiting foreigners to flee the comforts of home for the battlefields of Iraq and Syria, ISIS succeeded like no other -- encouraging more than 40,000 fighters from more than 110 countries to travel to the fighting fray both before and after the declaration of the "caliphate" in June 2014. Subsequently, authorities have warned about the threat of returning jihadists to their homeland and since the falls of Mosul, Raqqa and the rapidly receding footprint of ISIS, such fears have come to the forefront. According to a new report, "Beyond the Caliphate: Foreign Fighters and the Threat of Returnees," released this week by the Soufan Center -- a Washington-based security intelligence consultancy -- there are now at least 5,600 citizens or residents from 33 countries who have returned home -- accounting for about 15 percent of the fighters. FILE - In this file picture taken on Friday, July 21, 2017, Kurdish soldiers from the Anti-Terrorism Units, carry a blindfolded an Indonesian man suspected of Islamic State membership, at a security center, in Kobani, Syria.


ISIS fighters surrender in Syria, others killed in Afghanistan

FOX News

Meanwhile, a U.S. drone strike in Afghanistan's eastern Kunar province on Thursday killed 14 ISIS militants, Afghan officials said Saturday. In Raqqa, all of the combatants were "removed from the city," a spokesman for the U.S-led coalition against ISIS told Reuters on Saturday. Today or tomorrow the city may be liberated," YPG spokesman Nouri Mahmoud told Reuters. "We still expect difficult fighting in the days ahead and will not set a time for when we think (Islamic State) will be completely defeated in Raqqa," U.S. military spokesman Col. Ryan Dillon told Reuters in an emailed statement.


Ambushed US troops weren't covered by drone, officials say

FOX News

Two other Special Forces soldiers were also wounded in the Niger ambush; Lucas Tomlinson has the story for'Special Report.' The two wounded special forces soldiers were flown to a military hospital in Germany where they are expected to recover. The State Department has warned of repeated cross-border attacks and kidnappings by AQIM fighters based in Mali, despite the best efforts of the French military which has battled the terrorist group for years. Lucas Tomlinson is the Pentagon and State Department producer for Fox News Channel.


Jamil and Siri: ISIS conflict forces two lives to intersect — and both are saved

FOX News

Soon after Siri and Jamil arrived in Mosul, an ISIS guard threatened to kill Jamil if Siri refused to have sex with him. The rapist, called "The Tunisian," told Siri her situation would improve if she became a Muslim and married him. At the same time, Jamil was the key to Siri's survival. When sitting with Siri and his birth mother, Jamil now always sits closer to Siri, observed Kizilhan observed.


US drone strikes in Somalia target al-Shabaab fighters

FOX News

The U.S. military says it conducted two drone strikes Thursday against Al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Shabaab fighters in southern Somalia. The strikes took place near the Banadiir region of Somalia, an area that includes the capital, Mogadishu, the statement said. The president authorized the military to conduct offensive operations against al-Qaeda's third largest affiliate, which is seen as the most lethal terrorist group in Africa. Somalia's president says the drone strikes killed a high-level al-Shabaab leader, the Associated Press reported.


DARK SKIES OVER SYRIA US takes out armed Iranian drone as it moves on coalition troops

FOX News

A U.S. aircraft shot down an armed Iranian drone advancing on coalition forces in southern Syria on Tuesday, Fox News confirmed. The armed pro-regime Shaheed-129 UAV was shot down by a U.S. F-15E Strike Eagle about 12:30 a.m. after it displayed hostile intent and advanced on Coalition forces. An U.S Air Force F-15 Eagle fighter flies during a certification of the arresting gear last May. The coalition has made it clear to all parties publicly and through the deconfliction line with Russian forces that the demonstrated hostile intent and actions of pro-regime forces toward coalition and partner forces in Syria conducting legitimate counter-ISIS operations will not be tolerated.