Al-Shabab regroups in southern and southwestern Somalia; militant group takes control of towns

6 Sep

By Keffyalew Gebremedhin – The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)

    Before Barack Obama arrived in East Africa last July, the TPLF crooks orchestrated some military action, spending lots of money and human lives. They claimed quick victory and that there was no longer any Al-Shabab anymore in Somalia.

    There you have it, barely two months since Acting Governor of Lower Shabelle Ali Nur has now confirmed to Al Jazeera “fighters have taken El Saliindi and Kuntuwarey in country’s southwest. This happened just last Friday!



What can one make of this?

African leaders are using the war in Somalia and the fight against terrorism as their means by which they receive US political, diplomatic, military and financial support; it is their sustenance in power and comfort.

One should logically conclude that it is not in the interest of the East African corrupt and dictatorial regimes, especially the TPLF in Ethiopia to get Al Shabab booted out!

Not long after the wedding that was turned into tragedy for ordinary folks in Somalia, Al Shabab took revenge on AMISOM camp, manned by Ugandans over 12 were killed. During the attack, the Ugandans ran for their lives abandoning camp and weapons, which the extremist group acquired!

In peacetime, the AMISOM forces harass and persecute peaceful Somali citizens. The same happens in Ethiopia, literally everyday, an experience that has been transferred there.

Recall that the Ugandan forces attacked invited guests at a wedding and mowed down seven persons. As usual the African Union denied it ever happened. Only international pressure, especially, among others, thanks to Human Rights Watch, which got it to admit and apologize.

The whole war situation and the African peace mission has taken leaves from the very governance practices of African countries themselves. Lies and more lies, killing and more killing of helpless peoples and political shenanigans.

It is a sorry state of affairs in Africa; but this is what the United States National Security Advisor has welcomed about East Africa’s fight against terrorism and her president saluted during his visit of the sub-region recently!

The folly of such policy is made know repeatedly; the latest one came just Friday, with al-Shabab taking control of two towns in southwestern Somalia, which both a Somali official and the group have confirmed. This came on the heel of another attack when fighters from the African Union fled their camp base in the same area, according to Al Jazeera.

A spokesperson for al-Shabab told Reuters that the group had seized two small towns in the Lower Shabelle region; El Saliindi, 65km south of Mogadishu, en route to the port town of Marka; and Kuntuwarey, on the road between the capital and the port of Barawe.

“It is sad to say al-Shabab has taken El Saliindi. AU forces withdrew and al-Shabab now controls it,” said Nur, adding that Kuntuwarey had been seized on Friday.

Also on Saturday, al-Shabab attacked an African Union convoy outside Marka, claiming they killed several soldiers in the attack. But a local official said the death toll had not been determined.

“A roadside bomb targeted an AU vehicle as the AU convoy passed in the outskirts of Marka today. We do not know details about casualties,” said Nur.

On Tuesday, al-Shabab stormed an African Union base about 90km south of Mogadishu, killing at least 12 Ugandan soldiers who served as African Union peacekeepers.

The group, which often exaggerates the success of its attacks, claimed it had killed 70 people in the assault, which came roughly a year after al-Shabab leader Ahmed Abdi Godane was killed in a US air strike.

Al-Shabab was pushed out of Mogadishu by African Union peacekeeping forces in 2011.

The group aims to overthrow Somalia’s central government and establish a state based on its interpretation of Islamic law.

Meanwhile, Somalia government Thursday replaced its chief of the armed forces barely two days after the armed group Al-Shabaab staged a deadly attack on AMISOM base in Janale, 90 km south of the Somali capital Mogadishu.

In its regular weekly meeting, the Somali Cabinet unanimously endorsed General Mohamed Aden Ahmed to head the Somali Armed Forces, replacing his former commander, Gen. Dahir Adan Elmi. The Cabinet meeting that saw the endorsement of the new general was chaired by the Prime Minister, Omar Abdirashid Sharmarke and attended by the Minister of Defense, Abdikadir Sheikh Ali Diini, who proposed the name to the Cabinet, according to AMISOM.

Somalia has strengthened security around the national place.
 

Source: Agencies
 

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