Al-Shabaab suffers defeats in intensified military operations in Somalia

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MOGADISHU, Somalia - Over 130 Al-Shabaab militants have been killed in Somalia for the last three weeks, Chief of Defense Forces Gen Odowa Yusuf Rageh has confirmed, adding the troops will continue eliminating the militants from their various hideouts in the country.

Most of those killed were caught up by the Somali National Army [SNA] in Middle and Lower Shabelle, where they have huge command, he noted. Security forces have intensified operations in these particular regions and have managed to liberate several villages.

According to Gen Odowaa, the offensive will be intensified in all Al-Shabab's hideouts in the region near Mogadishu, Somalia's capital. The militants have been caving in to the city in recent weeks, often executing small to large scale attacks, he said.

The operation mainly targeted Middle Shabelle in central Somalia and has been largely hailed as "successful" by several SNA commanders who participated in the exercise. It's not the first time the military is targeting Al-Shabaab within Central Somalia.

During the operations, state media said, dozens of Al-Shabaab bomb experts including foreign fighters were killed by security forces. Most of those who died were cornered in Ala-Futow and Qoryoley in Lower Shabelle, another notorious Al-Shabaab hideout.

The experts were cornered in one of the houses where they were preparing explosives for the Al-Shabaab fighters, state media noted, adding that some of the explosives went off. The number of those killed in that particular incident is yet to be revealed but security forces say at least 60 people died.

"Many members of al-Shabab bomb experts including foreigners have died in Ala-Futow village under Qoryoley district in Lower Shabelle. region after a house where explosive materials were being prepared by the terrorists exploded on Monday," read a tweet by SONNA.

The progress comes months before the exit of the Africa Union Mission Forces who are set to leave upon the implementation of the Somali Transition Plan [STP] late this year. The foreign troops are training SNA troops to take over security responsibilities in the country.

"Somali National Army [SNA] is conducting offensive security operations to flush out a terrorist group of Al-Shabab in the Middle Shebelle region for the third week. More than 100 terrorists were killed in the current operations," state media added.

General Odowaa has been leading the operation contrary to the protocols of the forces. The youthful general is credited for helping flush out Al-Shabaab from different parts of the country under his leadership.

But unfortunately, Major Mohamed Abdiwahid, the Commander of the 6th battalion of Somalia’s special forces [Gorgor] was killed in a battle between SNA and the terrorist group of Al-Shabab at Jalable village in the Middle Shabelle region on Thursday, last week.

The commander was part of the officers leading ongoing security operations against terrorists in the Middle Shabelle region. The hero who has paid the ultimate price for his country’s stability has been in military service for more than 10 years.

Somalia’s Prime Minister, Mohamed Rooble extended his heavy-hearted condolences to the family, Somali army, and all Somali people on the death of Major Mohamed Abdiwahid. This was one of the major casualties in the crackdown against Al-Shabaab.

Al-Shabaab still poses danger across Somalia and Kenya, with the United Nations Security Council [UNSC] designating the group as terrorists. Britain, Turkey, and the US have also been training the Somali Army, which was greatly weakened after the ouster of military dictator Siad Barre.

GAROWE ONLINE

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