Somalia confirms 20 militants killed in military base attack

MOGADISHU, Sept. 4– At least 20 Al-Shabaab militants were killed
and several others injured early Sunday when the insurgents raided a
military base in the outskirts of Somalia’s coastal city of Kismayo.

Ismail Sahardid with Somalia National Army (SNA) confirmed the attack at
Buulo Guduud, some 30 kilometers north of Kismayo at dawn which caused
casualties on both sides. “Terrorists attacked our base in Buulo Guduud
with suicide car bomb attacks, then fighting erupted causing casualties on
both sides. We resisted the militants and killed 20 fighters during the
operation, we are in control of the base now,” Sahardid said. He did not
provide the number of casualties on the SNA side and denied that the
militants seized some vehicles. Al-Shabaab militants claimed victory over
the deadly attack at Buulo Guduud base, saying its fighters killed 25
soldiers, recovered three vehicles and took large amount of ammunition from
SNA store there. It also said they captured Buulo Guduud.

Independent sources say that the casualties are more than told and 24
Jubaland State forces and government soldiers were hospitalized at the main
general hospital in Kismayo town. Witness said the military base is
jointly operated by the the SNA and forces from the semi-autonomous
Jubaland region of southern Somalia. The militants have recently increased
their attacks against the African Union and Somalia forces, especially in
Mogadishu and southern Somalia, which has seen a surge of attacks that
resulted in the loss of several strategic towns although the militants
mainly held those towns briefly. The AU and Somali forces have also
increased airstrikes in southern Somalia in the recent past, resulting in
the killing of several militants and some defections. – XINHUA