Senior Biden administration officials visited Somalia this week in what the White House said was aimed at bolstering the war against Al-Shabaab.
According to a statement from the White House, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security Dr. Liz Sherwood-Randall, USAFRICOM Commander General Stephen Townsend, and Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low-Intensity Conflict Chris Maier visited Somalia, Djibouti and Kenya this past week.
“The trip focused on advancing the Biden Administration’s counterterrorism policy in an evolving threat landscape: prioritizing the most dangerous and ascendant threats; empowering local partners to prevent and counter terrorist threats within their own borders; and working multilaterally with regional and international allies and partners to pursue our broader security, governance, and development goals across the region,” the statement read in part.
The visit comes amid increased Al-Shabaab attacks in the Somalia amid an ongoing election. The US pulled out its troops from Somalia early 2020 but has been conducting aerial strikes against Alshabaab and ISIS targets.
“In East Africa, Dr. Sherwood-Randall, General Townsend, and Mr. Maier met with U.S. forces in Djibouti, Somalia, and Kenya who are responsible for executing the counterterrorism campaign against al-Shabaab in conjunction with local and regional partners, the statement added.