Somalia: Al Shabaab seizes strategic town as Kenyans withdraw
BADHADE -Somalia’s Al Qaeda linked Al Shabaab militants have seized a strategic town near Somalia’s southern border with neighboring Kenya without resistance, Garowe Online reports.
The militants poured into Lower Jubba region of Badhadhe after Kenyan-AMISOM peacekeepers alongside Jubaland forces made surprise pullout from the town.
Some Al Shabaab officials have reportedly gathered residents in public.
Jubaland commander Farah Haybe Moallim has confirmed the withdrawal in an interview with VOA Somali Service on Tuesday.
Moallim said, they were ordered to vacate Badhade.
Badhadhe, 180 off the southern port city of Kismayo has been a base for Kenyan forces over the last three years.
The new development follows a deadly raid by Al Shabaab militants on Kenya army base in Gedo region village El Ad on January 15.
Analysts point to weak counter-terrorism policy, lack of intense coordination between the allied troops and visible presence clout maintained by what has been beleaguered Al Shabaab.