Special Forces kill senior Al-Shabaab commander in Somalia

U.S. training Somali troops to fight Al Qaeda subsidiary al-Shabab [Photo: NBC News]

MOGADISHU, Somalia - An operation instigated by the Danab Special Forces with the aid of the US Africa Command left a senior Al-Shabaab commander dead and several other militants, the government of Somalia reported, noting that the leader of the group has been planning operations within Jubaland.

The elite Darwish forces of Jubaland state also participated in the operation which left a total of 13 Al-Shabaab militants dead, as Somalia increases the intensity in the fight against the group which is losing dominance in central and southern parts of the country following a national crackdown.

Friday's operation was activated in the Lower Jubba region where the militants are said to be in control but have since lost to Somali National Army [SNA] with a strong backing of the US Africa Command, the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia [ATMIS] and local militia, who have been supporting the course.

Aruriyow Mohamed Omar alias Ahmed Salah within the circles of Al-Shabaab has been coordinating the group's activities in Lower Jubba until he met his death at Turdho village. The death was announced by Arab Dheeg Ahmed, the commander of the 5th Brigade of the Somali National Army.

The commander, who has been coordinating activities in Lower Jubba said that President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud praised the latest government forces operation but did not specify how many militants were killed. The president has been passionate about the operations.

"I congratulate the national army and Jubaland forces on their victory in Friday's operation. The federal government is stepping up its efforts in ongoing operations. The liberation operation is going well in this state, and I applaud the Jubbaland leaders and its people for working together to liberate their areas."

The operation also comes days after the United States dispatched military weapons and ammunition to Danab Special Forces as part of the cooperation with the federal government in the fight against terrorism. The US has been a major security partner of the Horn of Africa nation for decades.

State Department noted that at least $80 million is used annually on training and equipping the Danab Special Forces who are critical in the fight against Al-Shabaab. The special unit, State Department added, gets a $300 token as a motivation besides being subjected to rigorous professional training.


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