Somalia says its army killed hundreds of militants in latest military operations


MOGADISHU, Somalia - Senior Al-Shabaab commanders were among the over 200 militants killed in the latest operation by the Somali National Army [SNA], the government announced on Thursday, noting that several weapons were seized from the group during the battle in Central Somalia.

Abdirahman Yusuf Aladdala, the Deputy Minister of Information in Somalia, said Thursday that the government troops with assistance from international partners conducted an operation at Iji village within the vicinity of Mahaday in HirShabelle. The militants were holed up in the area before facing the wrath from the troops.

The US Africa Command, the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia [ATMIS] troops have been instrumental in facilitating operations across the country and their participation on Thursday was "important", the minister added. Neither ATMIS nor the US Africa Command has confirmed the operation.

But the minister said several senior leaders of Al-Shabaab, including Salad Mohamud Siyad, also known as Sakawad, who led the militant insurgency group in the Middle Shabelle region along with his deputy Hussein Dhere were killed in the fierce battle which lasted for several hours.

Yusuf Ali Sheikh, who was in charge of Al-Shabaab in the Fidow area of the Middle Shabelle region and Sandheere, known as Hizbada were also among those killed, the minister added. This is one of the worst single casualty suffered by the militants in the country within the last seven months when the operation was activated.

The decide teams also managed to recover sophisticated weapons which are used by the Al-Shabaab extortionists and armoured vehicles which are now in the custody of the Somali National Army. The incident also saw several Al-Shabaab commanders arrested by the security forces.

The government also reported 70 militants killed in Ba’adweyn area in Galmudug this week with the US Africa Command confirming later on in the evening about an operation within the town which left at least five militants dead. The Al-Shabaab extortionists have been suffering massive losses in recent weeks.

During the press conference, the minister further confirmed five soldiers were killed, seven injured in al-Shabaab attack on Bar Sanguni, north of Kismayo, Jubaland on Thursday. Al-Shabaab claimed killing 36 soldiers although that figure has not been independently verified.

The village is located atleast 23 kilometers from Mahaday town within the troubled HirShabelle state. President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud had recently announced that the state along with Galmadug would be free from the Al-Shabaab soon following sustained operations which are supported by members of the international community.


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