WASHINGTON (ABC News/WRIC) — The Pentagon confirmed to ABC News Friday that a fourth U.S. soldier was killed in a recent ambush attack in Niger that is believed to have been carried out by an Islamic extremist group.
“The body of another U.S. service member has been recovered from the area of the attack, bringing the number of U.S. service members killed in this attack to four,” Col. Rob Manning, Pentagon spokesperson, said in a statement on Friday.
Shortly after the attack Wednesday, the soldier was declared missing, but his remains were not discovered until Friday.
Manning said that U.S. forces are working to determine which specific extremist group was responsible for the attack and that they “are resolved and stalwart in [their] efforts to go after [them].”
The three other soldiers killed in the attack were identified earlier in the day by the Pentagon. All three served with the 3rd Special Forces Group based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, though not all were Green Berets.
The soldiers were identified as Staff Sgt. Bryan Black, 35, Staff Sgt. Jeremiah Johnson, 39 and Staff Sgt. Dustin Wright, 29. All three died from wounds sustained in the ambush that happened near Niger’s border with Mali.
All were a part of a squad of 10-12 soldiers on a joint patrol with Nigerien soldiers who came under attack from a group of about 50 enemy soldiers.
At this point, it is still unclear which group specifically attacked, but groups operating in the area include Ansar Dine, an al Qaeda-affiliated extremist group and ISIS-West Africa.
Two others were injured in the attack, and are receiving treatment at an Army hospital in Germany.
The fourth soldier killed has not yet been identified.