17 Civilians Killed in Somalia Clashes

Published on Thursday 29th July 2010

At least 17 civilians were killed in clashes between Islamist insurgents and Somali government troops in Mogadishu. Somalia's embattled government welcomes the African Union's decision to send more troops to Mogadishu

Ambulance staff collected ten bodies of civilians and 46 wounded following clashes on Tuesday, the head of Mogadishu ambulance services Ali Musa said.

Seven others died of their injuries while undergoing treatment at the city's Madina hospital.

The clashes come as the AU announced it was going to send 4,000 troops to fight the Shebab movement which controls most of Somalia at the end of a three-day summit in Kampala, Uganda.

"We applaud the fresh troop contributions made by the AU states," said Somali government spokesperson Abdulkadir Mohamoud Walayo.

AMISOM currently counts some 6,000 soldiers from Uganda and Burundi which have been protected the presidential palace from Shebab.

The AU summit was dominated by the crisis in Somalia, which took a regional dimension when suicide attacks claimed by the Shebab ripped through crowds watching the World Cup final in the Ugandan capital on July 11, killing 76.

AMISOM is also seeking a tougher mandate, or at least modified rules of engagement, which would allow it to hunt the Shebab and not be limited to retaliatory action from the few blocks of Mogadishu housing the government.



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