US jets and drones conducted more than 20 airstrikes against al-Qaida targets in Yemen on Thursday, roughly one month after USA special operators carried out a raid in the same province that led to the death of a Navy SEAL, Pentagon officials said.
A senior US official told ABC News that "valuable intelligence" was gathered from the raid.
Before the president's remarks on Tuesday night, a senior USA official had said that "valuable intelligence" had been obtained from the raid.
The overnight strikes "will degrade the AQAP's ability to coordinate external terror attacks and limit their ability to use territory seized from the legitimate government of Yemen as a safe space for terror plotting", Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement. The raid in Shabwa destroyed a house known in the area as one where al-Qaida militants lived.
The attack was in al-Saeed, an area of Shabwa province home to the al-Awaleq tribe, the extended clan of Anwar al-Awlaki, a militant cleric and US citizen killed in 2011 by a USA drone strike.
This is not the first air raid by United States warplanes in Yemen this year.
The Yemeni officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak to the media.
Senior Chief Special Warfare Operator William "Ryan" Owens was killed in the intense firefight that occurred during the raid and five other American service members were wounded by enemy fire or injured in an MV-22 Osprey "hard landing", officials said.
Some critics say the information gathered in the raid is not worth the loss of life.
The group has recently exploited the chaos of Yemen's civil war, which pits Shiite Houthi rebels and allied army units against a Saudi-led coalition battling to restore the internationally recognized government.
During the operation, U.S. special operations forces killed 14 militants as well as civilians, including the eight-year-old daughter of previously assassinated al-Qaeda leader Anwar Awlaki.
The United States launched dozens of drone strikes throughout Barack Obama's presidency to combat al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, regarded as one of the Islamist group's most risky branches.
Owen's father, Bill, has called for an investigation into the raid's planning and criticized the Trump administration for its timing.