US Africa Command identifies soldier killed in al-Shabaab attack in Kenya

US Africa Command identifies soldier killed in al-Shabaab attack in Kenya
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The Defense Department on Monday confirmed the death of the soldier killed over the weekend in a terror attack on a Kenyan airbase used by U.S. troops.

Spc. Henry Mayfield Jr., 23, of Evergreen Park, Ill., was killed on Sunday during a morning attack on a Kenya Defense Forces military base in Manda Bay, according to a Pentagon statement.

Two U.S. contractors were also killed and two Pentagon personnel were wounded in the attack claimed by the East Africa-based al Qaeda affiliate al-Shabaab.

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No additional details of the incident were released, as it is under investigation.

U.S. Africa Command (Africom) said the attack involved “indirect and small arms fire” and damaged six contractor-operated civilian aircraft.

Earlier on Monday, Africom released a statement that said its East Africa Response Force arrived at Manda Bay the day of the attack “to augment security to secure the airfield after an attack by al-Shabaab terrorists.”

The command does not assess the attack to be linked to Iran following escalating tensions between Washington and Tehran after President Trump’s ordered a drone strike that killed top Iranian commander Gen. Qassem Soleimani last week.

Mayfield was assigned to 1st Battalion, 58th Aviation Regiment, 164th Theater Airfield Operations Group, Fort Rucker, Alabama. He was supporting Operation Octave Shield at the time of his death.