Three Americans perished in a terror attack on a military base in Kenya.
CNN reports the U.S. Africa Command confirmed a U.S. service member and two civilian contractors working for the Defense Department were killed in the attack carried out by the extremist group Al-Shabaab, on Sunday (Jan. 5).
Two other DOD members were wounded in the attack, the African Command also confirmed, CNN reports.
Army Specialist Henry Mayfield Jr., 23, from the Chicago area, was among the three people killed in the attack, WGN9 reports.
Mayfield joined the Army in 2018, WGN9 reports.
Names of the other victims and the wounded have not been released, CNN reports.
According to WGN9, Kenya’s military said at least four attackers were also killed.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of our teammates who lost their lives today,” U.S. Army Gen. Stephen Townsend, commander, U.S. Africa Command, said in a statement, CNN reports. “As we honor their sacrifice, let’s also harden our resolve. Alongside our African and international partners, we will pursue those responsible for this attack and al-Shabaab who seeks to harm Americans and U.S. interests. We remain committed to preventing al-Shabaab from maintaining a safe haven to plan deadly attacks against the U.S. homeland, East African and international partners.”
CNN reports U.S. authorities provided more details about the attack, which involved indirect and small arms fire. They said forces from Kenya Defense forces as well as those from U.S. Africa Command fought back the attack after an initial penetration of the perimeter of the facility.
“The work that our U.S. forces are doing in East Africa bolsters partnerships, counters malign influence, and maintains critical pressure on terrorist networks,” Townsend said, CNN reports. “Our efforts directly contribute to counterterrorism, maritime surveillance, and intelligence sharing missions with our Kenyan partners. This activity enables enhanced security and stability in the region and for America.”