Biden approves return of US troops to Somalia

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Several hundred US troops could return to Somalia after President Joe Biden approved their deployment largely reversing a decision by his predecessor, Donald Trump. The president has also signed off on a request from the Pentagon to target suspected leaders of the al-Shabab militant group, the New York Times reports.

“The decision to reintroduce a persistent presence was made to maximise the safety and effectiveness of our forces and enable them to provide more efficient support to our partners,” National Security Council spokeswoman Adrienne Watson is quoted as saying, adding that it would enable “a more effective fight against al-Shabab”.

It comes as Somali MP’s elected a new president, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, on Sunday.