Saturday November 5, 2022
Mogadishu (HOL) - Al-Shabab militants have been accused of torturing reluctant fighters among its ranks after evidence was discovered in the recently liberated El-Hareeri village in Moqokori district in the Hiiraan region.Speaking to the media Friday in Mogadishu, Defense Ministry spokesperson Abdullahi Ali Anod said government forces backed by local clan militia forces entered the village and encountered a shocking incident in which young men were tied together with explosives and detonated. There was evidence that some of the fighters - many of them reportedly young- were shot before being tortured.
The Somali military said it made the discovery in the Garas Magan and El Hareeri villages of the Hiiraan region in central Somalia, about 320 kilometres north of Mogadishu.
The government said this proves that al-Shabab is forcibly conscripting locals into its ranks amidst the intensifying government offensive.
Anod said that members killed in the fight were young men kidnapped and forced to fight against government forces.
The Somali National Army and local clan militias have reportedly killed at least 100 militants near El-Hareeri village in recent days.
Major Ahmed Abdullahi Beeryare, commander of a battalion of the SNA's U.S.-trained Danab unit, who is among the generals leading the campaign against al-Shabab, said that "the number of al-Shabab fatalities could be as high as 200."