20 People Killed in Latest Somali capital Mogadishu Clashes

Published on Saturday 19th June 2010

At least 20 people were killed and dozens others injured in heavy shelling and gunfire exchanged between Somali government forces and insurgents in south and northern Somali capital Mogadishu, witnesses said.

The clashes broke out early Friday when heavily armed rebel fighters carried out attacks on government troops' bases in the southern district of Medina, leading to heavy exchange of mortar fire that lasted for three hours.

According to eyewitnesses, most of the dead are rebel fighters while few bodies of government soldiers were seen carried out by their comrades.

"The dead bodies of 10 fighters were dumped at Hosh intersection when the fighting stopped," an eyewitness who requested not to be named told Garowe Online. Five civilians were also reported to have died in the clashes.

Another eyewitness reported seeing dead government soldiers carried on a battle wagon.

Some wounded civilians were admitted at Mogadishu's Medina hospital while both government and rebels claimed victory in the latest fighting.

The restive seaside capital has been wrecked by deadly clashes between rebel fighters and government troops backed by AU troops in recent months.

Powerful militant groups are bent on overthrowing fragile UN-backed transition government, which controls little more than a few blocks of Mogadishu.



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