Fighters from the al-Shabab group have attacked a base for African Union peacekeepers in southwestern Somalia, blasting their way into the compound and exchanging fire with peacekeepers, a Somali military official said.
Dozens of al-Shabab fighters on Friday assaulted the military base, which is run by Kenyan troops who are part of the AU force in the town of El-Ade, not far from the Kenyan border, Ahmed Hassan told AP news agency by phone from Elwak, a town near the scene of the latest attack.
The attack started with a suicide car bomb, and then heavy gunfire was heard as fighters stormed into the base, he said.
Fighting is still going on inside the base, he said. He had no details about any casualties. However, Al-Shabab said their fighters killed dozens of Kenyan troops in the attack.
Al-Shabab reported on its online radio station that its fighters had managed to penetrate the base and were fighting African Union troops.
Despite being pushed out of Somalia’s major cities and towns, al-Shabab continues to launch deadly guerrilla attacks across the Horn of Africa country. The group, which has ties with al-Qaeda, has also carried out many deadly attacks inside Kenya. – AFP