Somalia: Al-Shabaab bomb expert 'captured' in Mogadishu
MOGADISHU, Somalia - The embattled Somali Intelligence and Security Agency [NISA] claimed it has detained a senior Al-Shabaab bomb-making expert during a covert operation in Mogadishu on September 27, Garowe Online reports.
In a Twitter post, NISA said Friday its Intelligence officers have successfully nabbed the unnamed militant after an hours-long raid in the vicinity of Ex-control Afgoye in the capital, acting on a tip-off from local residents.
"During hours-long operation at Ex-control in Mogadishu on the night of the 27the September has led to the capture of an Al-Shabaab member who was an explosives expert," NISA tweeted.
It added that it assessed casualties in the operation, neither on its soldiers nor civilians.
The U.S.-funded Somali Intelligence Agency has been making such claims on social media as it faces an internal crisis amid an uptick in terrorist attacks and assassinations in Mogadishu by the Al Shabaab extremist group.
- NISA in Internal Crisis -
NISA has seen leadership changes since President Farmajo came to power in 2017, in what security analysts believed a major setback to the country's fight against the Al-Qaeda-affiliated Al Shabaab radical group.
Last August, the first and second deputies of NISA have been relieved of their duties and replaced with Fahad Yasin, former Al-Jazeera Arabic journalist with no training in the security matters by Farmajo.
Sources within security circles said Yasin is trying to use the new office of the deputy Intelligence chief to gain more influence in the government despite no trust from the security chiefs of the East Africa countries.
Yasin's appointment drew murmurs with reports that the regional security heads, especially the troop-contributing countries to AMISOM got concerned and reluctant to share with him Intelligence information.
Through his influence, Yasin who maintains close ties with Qatar has attempted many times to establish mutual relations with Kenya, but, his overture was turned down due to his former links with Islamist groups.
A confidential memo dated 10 September addressed to United Nations which in eleven points asserts that NISA has been infiltrated by Al-Shabaab and come under the control of groups of individuals who have links to Islamist group.