US to deploy troops to Somalia

President Joe Biden has signed an order to deploy members of the U.S. military to Somalia.

>> Read more trending news

The president made the decision due to heightened concerns about al-Shabab extremists, The Associated Press reported.

Al-Shabab is a Somali terrorist group affiliated with al-Qaida.

Former President Donald Trump had withdrawn almost all of the 700 ground troops who had been deployed there, The New York Times reported.

Since Biden took office, airstrikes have been conducted to defend U.S. military partners who faced a threat, the Times reported. There also have been U.S. military members in the African country to train and advise Somali and African Union forces.

“The decision to reintroduce a persistent presence was made to maximize the safety and effectiveness of our forces and enable them to provide more efficient support to our partners,” Adrienne Watson, the spokesperson for the National Security Council, said, according to the newspaper.

The request to deploy troops was made by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, the AP reported.

Watson did not say how many military members would be on the ground but two sources told the Times it would be capped at about 450.

A source who requested to remain anonymous said that the forces already in the region would be repositioned, the AP reported.