U.S. airstrikes killed dozens of Islamic State trainees in Yemen in a series of Thursday strikes, the Pentagon announced Monday.
The strikes are the first against the terrorist group’s affiliate in Yemen, where al-Qaida also maintains a robust insurgency and has been frequently targeted by drone strikes under the Trump administration. Yemen is currently in the midst of a years long chaotic civil war which extremists are exploiting to develop safe havens. The group’s Yemeni affiliate was added to the list of terror affiliates in May 2016.
“ISIS used the camps to train militants to conduct terror attacks using AK-47s, machine guns, rocket-propelled grenade launchers and endurance training,” the Pentagon noted. “ISIS has used the ungoverned spaces of Yemen to plot, direct, instigate, resource and recruit for attacks against America and its allies around the world. For years, Yemen has been a hub for terrorist recruiting, training and transit,” it added.
The terrorist group’s affiliate released photos of a training camp, including fighters kicking each other in the testicles to breed toughness.
ISIS fighters in Yemen practice getting kicked in the nuts pic.twitter.com/pi4N4uVO6o
— Cole Bunzel (@colebunzel) October 9, 2017
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