Reports say China-made jets have targeted region following attack on Ethiopia’s military base in Somalia
Strikes in Ethiopia’s eastern region of Tigray following the attack on a military base in neighbouring Somalia, the country’s defence ministry has said.
The air force launched air strikes from Mount Takiheli on Wednesday evening and four outposts were reported hit, according to the official Addis Standard news site, which cited the defence ministry.
It added that a further 15 to 20 militants had been killed in an earlier military operation in the same region.
Tigray is a closed-off region that shares a border with a volatile area of Somalia. The region is also home to the Tigray Liberation Front, an ethnic Tigrayan group that has for years fought a struggle against the central government.
Tuesday’s attack on the Garissa military base prompted Ethiopian army chiefs to reveal a top-level meeting to discuss the unprecedented assault, the first in seven years.
Ethiopia has long faced accusations that it supports Somalia’s al-Shabaab Islamist militants against Somalia’s central government. It denies those claims and says it supports the Somali government but only acts in support of efforts to end the war and boost development.
After the attack on Garissa, Ethiopia claimed to have killed dozens of militants. Addis Standard reported that the air force had used Apache helicopters and heavy weapons to counter the militant attack.
The US also carried out at least four airstrikes against al-Shabaab in Somalia in November, targeting militant positions around the town of Bosaso. Ethiopia is an ally of the US in its fight against Islamist militants in the Horn of Africa and its fighters are known to aid in US air strikes in Somalia.