Somalia says key Al Shabaab leader killed in operation near Mogadishu

MOGADISHU — Somalia’s president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed (Farmajo) says a key Al Shabaab leader was killed on Thursday in an operation carried out near the capital city of Mogadishu.

Thursday’s operation was conducted in Shashweyne area, killing a key Al Shabaab figure, who was behind bombings and assassinations in Mogadishu, Farmajo said.

“Earlier on Thursday, I ordered an operation, which killed an Al Shabaab figure near Mogadishu. This leader played key role in assassinations and bombings in the capital,” he said on Twitter.

Farmajo did not mention the slain figure’s name and position in Al Shabaab.

There was no response from the armed group of Al Shabaab over the claims made by the country’s president.

Mogadishu explosion

Separately, at least three people were injured when an explosives-laden car blew up on Thursday in the heart of Somalia’s capital Mogadishu.

The blast detonated from a car loaded with explosives parked at Maka Al Mukarama road in the capital, leaving three people wounded, police officer Mohamed Hussein said.

Hussein told The Messenger Africa that the security forces seized the parked car and then exploded it, adding that driver of the exploded car, had escaped from scene.

No group says it has been behind the explosion.

Deadly clash kills 20 people in southwest of Somalia

Heavy fighting broke out between Al Shabaab fighters and other armed forces loyal to former militant commander Sheikh Mukhtar Robow near Hudur town in southwest of Somalia’s Bakol region.

The battle flared up when heavily armed Al Shabaab fighters attacked on small Abal village held by Robow’s forces, killing at least 20 people from both sides.

Acting president of South-West State Mohamed Hassan told The Messenger Africa that at least 20 combatants had been killed in the clash, adding that vehicles were destroyed.

“We confirmed the death of 20 fighters belonging to Al Shabaab and defected leader, Mukhtar Robow during a fighting in Abal area near Hudur town,” he said.

Neither Al Shabaab nor Robow commented on the fighting in south-west of Somalia.