US President Donald Trump has given the Department of Defense top officials more freedom to execute “counterterrorism” missions in Yemen.
Pentagon commanders will have additional authority in selecting Yemen operations in order to achieve “a strategic effect” and will not need the president’s approval for each strike, US officials told the local media on Tuesday.
The White House is currently in talks with defense officials over similar amount of freedom in Libya and Somali, according to Sputnik.
The proposed changes come as the CIA carried out a February drone strike against Abu al Khayr al-Masri, al Qaeda’s second-in-command, signaling that the intelligence agency could once again become a major player in targeted strikes.
During the operation, US special operations forces killed 14 militants. However, the raid also resulted in death of US Navy Seal William Owens and an aircraft crash-landing. Right after the operation, media reported that as many as 20 civilians may have been killed.