|Al-Shabaab militants. (File, AP)|
Mogadishu - Somalia's government says a regional leader of the al-Shabaab extremist group has been killed in a raid by Somali forces.
The statement on Sunday by Somalia's information minister says Lower Shabelle regional leader Moalin Osman Abdi Badil and three associates were killed Friday in Bariire village.
There is no immediate comment from the extremist group.
The raid came a day after a US service member was killed while supporting an operation by Somalia's military in the same area west of the capital, Mogadishu. The Pentagon called it the first US combat death in Somalia since 1993.
Both Somalia and the US are stepping up efforts against the Somalia-based al-Shabaab, which has carried out attacks in other parts of East Africa and continues to target the Somali capital with deadly bombings.