A Somali soldier stands guard next to the site where al-Shabab militants carried out an attack against a military base in Mogadishu on June 21, 2015. (AFP)
At least 12 Somali and African Union forces have been killed by the al-Shabab militant group in Somalia.
Monday, July 20, 2015
According to reports, the soldiers were killed in a bomb attack and ensuing clashes with the militant group on Sunday.
Initially, the militants targeted a convoy using a car bomb to kill six soldiers in the city of Manas in the southern Bay region in Somalia.
Following that incident, clashes broke out between militants and soldiers in the same area, leaving six other soldiers dead.
According to a local military commander, who was speaking on condition of anonymity, more than 10 al-Shabab terrorists were also killed in the fighting.
Meanwhile, the African Union military in Somalia announced that it was launching a new offensive to dislodge al-Shabab from places it still controls in the center and south of the country.
The African Union has over 20,000 troops in Somalia to help the weak government battle al-Shabab.
The African Union mission to Somalia, known as AMISOM, is largely made up of troops from Uganda, Ethiopia, Burundi, Djibouti, Kenya, and Sierra Leone.
Al-Shabab militants have been fighting to overthrow Somalia’s government since 2006.
The militants have been pushed out of the capital Mogadishu as well as other major cities by the government and AMISOM troops.