Somali military has taken over a key town in Lower Shabelle region near the state’s capital of Mogadishu. 15 militants were killed during the attack that saw others escape with severe injuries.
Security forces ambushed the militia from nearby Shalanbod town and rolled into Marka city, which has been Al Shabaab inhabited in the past. The troops took over Marka, a key port city in Southern Somalia’s Lower Shabelle region where explosions could be heard through the better part of the day.
The city that had been fully retaken by Somali and African Union forces in 2012 saw a return of the militants masquerading as civilians but have since fled following consecutive offensives by security forces, also leading to the liberation of other key towns.
Meanwhile, forces in the Puntland region have recaptured Af Urur, a strategic town from al Shabaab fighters. Captain Said Mohamed Diriye said the town, whose main road links the cities of Garowe, Bosaso and the Somali capital Mogadishu was recaptured without a fight.
Puntland has its own government and security forces patrolling its territory but Diriye said Al Qaeda-linked Al Shabaab fighters had captured the town last month.
The continued offensives against the militia group continue to add to the number of towns liberated from the Al Qaeda linked group.