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U.S. retaliates for Africa bombings

President Clinton's remarks
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Clinton orders strikes against targets in Afghanistan, Sudan

EDGARTOWN, Massachusetts (CNN) -- President Clinton said Thursday that U.S. armed forces had carried out strikes on "terrorist-related facilities" in Afghanistan and Sudan in retaliation for the recent bombings of two U.S. embassies in east Africa.

He did not announce the specific nature of the U.S. attacks but said he would provide more information after being briefed by members of his national security staff in Washington. Clinton broke off his vacation in Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, to return to the capital for that briefing.

"Today, I ordered our Armed Forces to strike at terrorist-related facilities in Afghanistan and Sudan because of the threat they present to our national security," Clinton told reporters.

Two bombs exploded August 7 at the U.S. embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam, killing 247 people in Kenya and 10 in Tanzania. More than 5,500 people were injured, mostly Kenyans.

Clinton said he ordered the strikes on the two targets because:

  • There was "convincing evidence" that the groups being attacked were involved in the embassy bombings.

  • "These groups have executed attacks against Americans in the past."

  • "We have compelling information that additional attacks were planned."

  • Clinton said the groups were "seeking to acquire chemical weapons and other dangerous weapons."

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