Reported Airstrike Kills Several Al-Shabaab Leaders, Sablale, Somalia

Emir Survives Strike

At approximately 0730 EST initial reports indicated that an airstrike had targeted a gathering of Al-Shabaab (AS) leaders in Sablaale town, Lower Shabelle region, about 200 km southwest of the capital Mogadishu. Among those present were the leader of AS, Ahmad Diriye [Abu Ubaidah], and several of his deputy emirs. Diriye reportedly has survived the strike.

At Least Four Deputies Reported Killed

By 0800 EST multiple sources had claimed that Al-Shabaab deputy head Abukar Ali Adan had been killed in the strike along with more than 20 AS fighters. Abukar Ali Adan has been described as a deputy emir of AS. His death was reported from a single source and has not been confirmed.

Credit: The Guardian

By 0810 EST, pro-Somali government media outlets began claiming that the Somal National Army (SNA) had carried out the strike and that Mahad Karate, Abu Ikran, and Fiidoow were among the AS leaders killed. As of this publication, multiple sources are disputing if the airstrike was conducted by the SNA or the U.S. military. These reports omitted news of Abukar Ali Adan’ death.

Mahad Karate is the U.S.-designated deputy emir of al-Shabaab. Given Karate’s leadership position with the extremist group, Karate was designated as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) by the U.S. Department of State on April 21, 2015, the reward for his capture has been increased to 10M USD.


Reports naming Fiidoow are most likely referring to Hussein Ali Fiidow who was a deputy emir who is in charge of governorates and finance back in 2018, there is no picture available. There is little to no information on Abu Ikran.

As of this publication, the United States government and the Somali government have not confirmed the strike or any of the reported casualties. This is developing.

United States Military Academy and American Military University Alumni. Victor covers flash military, intelligence, and geo-political updates.


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