22 Killed, 35 Wounded in Two Days of Mogadishu Clashes

Published on Tuesday 7th December 2010

At least 22 people have been killed and more than 35 others wounded in two days of fighting between African Union (AU) forces and al-Shabab fighters in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, Radio Garowe reports.

On Saturday, the fighting caused 12 deaths and 20 wounded, while at least 10 people were killed and 15 others wounded during Sunday's heavy clashes.

The heavy artillery exchange came after fighting broke out between AU troops and members of al-Shabab group in Mogadishu's northern district of Shibbis and Bondhere - where AMISOM forces controls.

"We have collected seven dead bodies and ferried twelve wounded people 'mostly civilians' to hospitals in Mogadishu when the both warring side fired mortars to busy places," said Mogadishu ambulance worker on Saturday.

However, the latest spate of violence came on the same day Somali Prime Minister Mohamed Abdullahi claimed that his troops killed several Al-Shabaab militant in the fighting between AU-backed government troops and the militants in the recent days.

"Forty three al-Shabab fighters were killed and scores of others suffered wounds as they attacked African Union as well as government positions and engaged in fierce crossfire with AU troops," said Prime Minister Farmajo.

In the visit of the new bases, The Somali Diaspora appealed to the AU and the TFG soldier to continue fighting with extremist, he said that he is happy how the troops succeed to capture the region.

On the other hand, Al Shabaab spokesman Abdiaziz Abu-Muscab also claimed to have killed dozen pro-government troops in the today's fighting.

"We succeeded to defeat our enemy, we will continue attacking them [AMISOM] until they surrender or until they give the new troops," said Abu-Muscab.

Burundi sent an additional 850 soldiers to Somalia last week to bolster the African Union peacekeeping force in the war-torn Horn of Africa country.

Currently, the AU peacekeeping contingent, whose main contributors are Uganda and Burundi, has about 8,000 troops on the ground --- and are struggling to overcome Al Shabaab, a self-declared Al Qaeda affiliate.

Insurgents of the two main Islamic groups, al-Shabaab and Hisbul Islam, control most of southern and central parts of Somalia following a three-year battle to overthrow the Sheikh Sharif Ahmed administration.

Somalis in Mogadishu have been victims of the insurgency since 2007, when Islamists declared war to overthrow the country's Western-backed TFG administration.



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