Intense fighting has raged in Somalia’s capital with African Union (AU) peacekeepers encountering fierce resistance from al-Shabab fighters as they pushed to Mogadishu’s outskirts for the first time.
Supported by tanks, the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), said on Friday that it had driven the fighters out of the coastal city’s Mogadishu University as well as the Barakaat cemetery, leaving the two sites under government control.
“This is the first time AMISOM has been able to secure an area outside the parameters of the city, allowing them to defend greater Mogadishu from the exterior,” Paddy Ankunda, AMISOM spokesman, said in a statement.
The al-Shabab fighters, who pulled most of their troops out of the capital in August, but still hold pockets of territory
on the northern outskirts, acknowledged losing ground, but said they had trapped the advancing force.
(via Al Jazeera)