Somalia al-Shabab resistance fighters inside the country where a US-backed regime is attempting to dominate the Horn of Africa state. A notice about potential attacks in Kenya was discredited as a fake claim., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Somalia:The Kismayo offensive continues
17 Sep 17, 2012 - 10:33:47 AM
KISMAYO, Somalia Sep 17 2012 (Garowe Online) – Allied forces have claimed victory in a battle lasting 3 days in which over 50 people were killed as the allied forces continue their assault on Al Shabaab, Garowe Online reports.
According to local sources, over 50 people from the battling sides in the clashes over the weekend in the lower Jubba region.
Somali military officials, who spoke to GO, said that they had minimal casualties in the battle although they did not disclose the number.
The allied forces said that they had taken over the town of Birta Dheer a defensive stronghold for the Al Shabaab, located 70 kms north of Kismayo.
Al Shabaab has been fighting for the past week to remain in control of Birta Dheer which is a junction point linking Afmadow and other major districts in the lower Jubba region.
Somali and Kenyan forces have reiterated their commitment to capture the port city of Kismayo within the next week.
“We are %100 committed to capturing Kismayo within the next week and we can say this because we have broken Al Shabaab’s defenses,” said Mohamed Hassan Barre a Somali military official battling in the lower Jubba region.
The allied forces have taken over defensive strongholds north and west of Kismayo taking control of Miido located 86 kms west of Kismayo and Biibi 80 kms north of Kismayo which allied forces captured on Saturday.
The heavy clashes were reportedly one of the most deadly battles as of yet in the Kismayo offensive as of late.
Locals in lower Jubba region who spoke to GO under anonymity stated that there were many Al Shabaab insurgents fleeing towards Kismayo carrying countless injured militants.
More attacks on Al Shabaab strongholds in the coming days are expected as many residents flee the lower Jubba region.
The Al Shabaab have retreated from many major strongholds such as Marko, Afgoye, Baidoa and now uncorroborated reports say they have fled Kismayo.
According to the unconfirmed reports, many Al Shabaab insurgents fled Kismayo on Monday towards Jilib south of Kismayo.
The Al Shabaab Twitter account stated that the militants had brought a Kenyan helicopter in the clashes.
However Kenyan officials have denied the claim and have repeatedly denied accusations of Al Shabaab militants destroying Kenyan aircraft.