Al-Shabaab militants killed in Somalia fighting
MOGADISHU, Somalia - The Al-Shabaab militants suffered another blow in the latest operation by the Somali National Army [SNA], just moments after the United Nations Security Council lifted a decades-long arms embargo imposed on Somalia, a country that has been on the receiving end for the last 17 years.
Somalia was given the power to purchase modern weapons that would be used by the military in various operations, a move that was lauded by various stakeholders, including members of the international community. The lifting of the arms embargo was termed "historical" by various government officials.
According to state media, at least 30 Al-Shabaab militants were killed on Thursday morning within the Mudug region, where the government soldiers and allies have been camping for the last three months for the combing exercise, which was preceded by a serious operation.
"More than 30 al-Shabaab militants were killed in a pre-dawn operation conducted by the SNA with the local forces in Barag-gurguurte, west of Harardhere, Mudug region," Mohamed Yusuf, the Harardhere District Commissioner confirmed.
"This is a significant milestone for our security teams which have been working tirelessly to safeguard our country from terrorists. We are encouraged that more gains will be made in coming months as the operation targets more regions," he stated.
President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has announced total war against Al-Shabaab militants who control large swathes of rural central and southern Somalia. Despite their threats, the militants have, however, lost strategic towns across the country including Kismayo, which they lost to Kenya Defence Forces [KDF].
Currently, the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia [ATMIS] has started the withdrawal of troops from the country, with an additional 3,000 troops set to leave by December 31st. The government believes that by December 2024, most security responsibilities will have been handed over to local troops.