Over 20 US airstrikes hit Yemen on Thursday, and it apparently wasn’t a one-off flurry of attacks, as officials in Yemen say that “several” additional strikes were carried out on Friday, and that they believe it is part of a sustained operation.
Yemeni officials conceded that they aren’t really sure what the objective of the US airstrikes is, though some US officials made vague reference to threats of al-Qaeda launch attacks abroad from central Yemen. The Yemeni officials did say they believe the US strikes are “open-ended.”
Pentagon officials aren’t offering much detail publicly, saying that there were “about 30” airstrikes overall in the last 48 hours, and denying reports of any ground raids being carried out in that period. How many more strikes are to be carried out remains totally uncertain.
Exactly what the US is hitting in the strikes isn’t totally clear either, with strikes mostly hitting remote mountain areas, which some Yemeni officials suggested were al-Qaeda camps and weapons depots. Today’s strikes also hit some towns which are known to have al-Qaeda figures living in them, though it’s unclear if anyone was hit.