Al-Shabab attacks Somalia army base

Fighters from the armed group carry out raid on army base in Bula Gudud near the southern port town of Kismayu.

    Al-Shabab attacks Somalia army base
    Al-Shabab claimed responsibility and said 26 soldiers had been killed [File: Hamza Mohamed/Al Jazeera]

    Al-Shabab fighters attacked a military base near Somalia's southern port city of Kismayu early on Sunday, a Somali army officer said, adding that he did not immediately have details of any casualties.

    The armed group claimed responsibility for the attack and said 26 Somali soldiers had been killed in the incident, but that could not be confirmed by other sources.

    "We understand al-Shabab attacked the base and fierce fighting and a blast occurred, but still we have no details," Mohamed Isa, a military officer, told Reuters news agency from Kismayu.

    The attack was on a base in the village of Bula Gudud, near Kismayu.

    State radio also reported the base had been attacked but said casualties were not yet known.

    The base is jointly operated by the Somali national army and forces from the semi-autonomous Jubbaland region of southern Somalia, it reported.

    Residents in Bula Gudud said a blast was heard and an exchange of gunfire broke out shortly after the first Muslim prayer of the day.

    Abdiasis Abu Musab, al-Shabab's military spokesman, told Reuters: "This morning, we stormed the Jubbaland base near Bula Gudud. We killed 26 soldiers and burnt two cars."

    The group left the base after taking weapons, ammunition and several vehicles, he added.

    Al-Shabab is linked to al-Qaeda and wants to impose strict Islamic law in Somalia.

    The group routinely exaggerates casualty figures.

    SOURCE: News agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How different voting systems work around the world

    How different voting systems work around the world

    Nearly two billion voters in 52 countries around the world will head to the polls this year to elect their leaders.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    How the art world's hunger for ancient artefacts is destroying a centuries-old culture. A journey across the Himalayas.