March 25, 2023

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Al-Shabaab attacks an African Union military base in Somalia


The bomber struck shortly after noon in front of a U.S. military base near the village of Seal Baraf in Somalia. Al-Shabaab, linked to al-Qaeda, has claimed responsibility for the attack.

From Shepab The military base of the African Union (AU) peacekeeping force was attacked with heavy weapons on Tuesday morning, May 3. Somalia, A local military commander and several witnesses. The site is home to Burundian soldiers of African median mission in Somalia (Admis) near the village of Seal Paraf, 160 km northeast of Mogadishu.

“There were heavy fighting and casualties on both sides, but so far we have no further details,” local army chief Mohammad Ali told the AFP by phone. “They started the attack with a car explosion before a fierce gun battle.”

A Burundian military official told the AFP that about 30 soldiers had been killed, 22 wounded and a dozen were missing. Confirmation of this assessment was not immediately available from Somali or AU officials.

“There were heavy explosions and exchanges of automatic weapons. Burundian soldiers left the site to enter the village of Seal Paraf before helicopters could provide air support,” said local Veliov Malim.

Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility for the attack

The Somali government has strongly condemned the “brutal attack on Admis” and called on the international community to support Somali forces and Admis in “effectively combating terrorism.”

Chairman of the CommissionUAMoussa Faki Mahamat said on Twitter that he had spoken to Burundi’s President Evariste Ndayishimiye to pay tribute to the “sacrifice” of the peacekeepers who lost their lives.

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Shepab, attached Al-Qaeda And those who led the uprising against the Somali government for more than a decade, claiming responsibility for the attack in a statement. They captured the base and claimed to have killed 173 AU soldiers. According to the US NGO SITE Intelligence, they also released a video of the bodies appearing to be the bodies of soldiers. The given report and video could not be verified independently.

Worrying electoral process

The Admiralty, which represents about 20,000 soldiers, police and civilians from African countries, formally reorganized the African peacekeeping force in Somalia (Amisom) and was extended until the end of March 2024 by the United Nations Security Council. Stabilize the country against Islamic insurgency Shebab.

Amisom expelled al-Shabab from major cities in the country in 2011, including the capital Mogadishu, which allowed it to establish a government and federal entities, hold two rotating elections (2012, 2017) and organize a third of the population. To be completed in the coming weeks.

But in recent months, al-Shabab has intensified its attacks on the country, taking particular responsibility for two spectacular attacks on March 24.

The attack comes on Tuesday, less than a week after parliament appointed the leaders of two of Somalia’s leaders, paving the way for a presidential election. International partners have expressed concern over delays in the electoral process that could divert the government from the fight against al-Shabab or from the risk of famine in the country.

With AFP