African Union Base in Somalia Attacked By Al-Shabab
Witnesses in Somalia’s Gedo region said al-Shabab militants attacked an African Union military base yesterday near the town of El-Adde, about 60 kilometers south of the regional capital, Garbaharey.
What was believed to have been a suicide bombing was followed by a firefight with Kenyan troops stationed at the base.
Witnesses said the attackers rammed at least four cars filled with explosives into the main gate of the southern Somali base. The blasts were followed by heavy gunfire between the attackers and Kenyan soldiers.
Al-Shabab said it killed more than 60 Kenyan troops.
Deputy Gedo Governor Mohamed Hussein Isaak said that at least 40 Kenyan soldiers were killed and said some troops managed to escape the base.
The African Union mission in Somalia, known as AMISOM, confirmed the attack but refused to give details.
Kenyan Defense Forces said in a statement that al-Shabab militants attacked a Somalian army base near the Kenyan forces’ base.
The statement said the militants overran the camp, but the Kenyans counterattacked, in support of the Somali troops. The statement said fighting is ongoing.
Residents said al-Shabab has taken control of the town and surrounding areas and has hoisted its flag. The residents also said the militants seized weapons on military vehicles.
Al-Shabab carried out similar attacks on AU facilities in June and in September of last year. Dozens of peacekeeping troops were killed in those attacks.