The U.S. military has said that its African Command’s (Africom’s) East Africa Response Force (EARF) has arrived at Kenya’s Manda Bay to augment security after three Americans were killed in an attack launched by al-Shabab terrorists on Sunday.
“The EARF provides a critical combat-ready, rapid deployment force. The EARF’s ability to respond to events spanning a vast area of responsibility provides a proven and invaluable on-call reinforcement capability in times of need,” William Gayler, Africom’s director of operations, said in a statement issued on Monday evening.
The EARF falls under the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa and is tasked to respond to a variety of military operations, including providing humanitarian assistance or safeguarding Americans and diplomatic facilities in Africom’s area of operations.
Al-Shabab, an extremist group, attacked Kenyan and U.S. troops in Manda Bay on Sunday morning in what the U.S. military described as an indirect and small arms fire.
According to Africom, six contractor-operated civilian aircrafts suffered damage during the attack that left a U.S. service member and two civilian contractors working for the Defense Department dead.
However, al-Shabab said its suicide bombers killed 17 American and nine Kenyan troops in its first attack against U.S. forces in Kenya.