27 al-Shabab militants killed in Somali airstrike

The U.S. military said Wednesday that it had killed 27 fighters from the al-Shabab militant group in an air strike in Somalia’s central Hiran region, where the army and allied forces have launched an offensive against the insurgents in the last month.

In Hiran region, residents say al Shabaab’s torching of houses, destruction of wells and killing of civilians.

“The defensive strikes allowed the Somali National Army and African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) forces to regain the initiative and continue the operation to disrupt al-Shabab in the Hiran region of central Somalia,” according to the U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM).

The Somali forces and international partners have intensified security operations in the recent past against al-Shabab extremists in the southern and central regions in an attempt to liberate al-Shabab-held towns.

(With input from agencies)