Defense Department identifies Navy SEAL killed in Somalia

Miranda GreerMay 09, 2017

Al-Shabaab is the largest faction working to topple the Somali government, seeking to establish a society based on Islamic law, known as Sharia.

US and Somali forces were attacked shortly after arriving by helicopter to the target location, a compound that housed a group of al-Shabaab militants associated with an attack on facilities nearby used by Somali and USA military forces.

"Senior Chief Kyle Milliken embodied the warrior spirit and toughness infused in our very best Navy SEALs", Rear Admiral Timothy Szymanski, Commander, Naval Special Warfare Command, said.

The attackers were "neutralized" and the wounded service members were taken to neighboring Djibouti, said an official.

Milliken was a Virginia Beach-based Navy SEAL from ME, serving as a member of SEAL Team Six.

Rep. Chellie Pingree released a statement saying "our hearts are heavy" with the loss of Milliken. "He graduated from Cheverus High School as one of their top track stars", Pingree said.

"Kyle was a great student as well, it really didn't surprise me when he made the grade as a Navy Seal".

Fighting, poor infrastructure and several years of drought in Somalia have left 6 million people in need of humanitarian assistance. Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire Milliken family and those who knew Senior Chief Millken from his early days in Falmouth. "May we never forget his extraordinary bravery and incredible sacrifice", Pingree said.

A Somali intelligence official says us forces killed at least six people during a raid on a building housing the al-Shabab extremist group's Andalus radio station Thursday night outside the capital, Mogadishu. There were no Somali casualties, the source said. As of late 2016, dozens of individuals from Minnesota's Somali community have been recruited by al-Shabaab, Fox News reports.

The government said the death of the al Shabaab leader "strengthens the war on terror - so fighters have a chance to leave al Shabaab".

A U.S. soldier has been killed in a special operations mission with Somali forces against al-Shabab.

The U.S. Africa Command, responsible for all American military operations on the continent, said forces came under attack during an advise-and-assist mission alongside members of the Somali National Army.

Somalia descended into chaos in 1991 after longtime dictator Mohammad Siad Barre was overthrown by clan-based militias, who then fought each other for power.

A spokesman for al-Shabab, which is fighting to overthrow Somalia's western-backed government, said that its fighters had killed "several" United States soldiers.

AMISOM forces have been in Somalia since 2007, gradually expanding to secure the capital and pushing into major towns. First Lt. Weston C. Lee was killed by an improvised explosive device while advising Iraqi security forces battling ISIS inside Mosul.

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