Somalia says 130 al-Shabab fighters killed

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Deutsche Presse Agentur

At least 130 fighters of the Islamist militia al-Shabab have been killed in fighting in Somalia, according to the country’s defence ministry.

Al-Shabab endured heavy losses at the hands of government troops and militias in the battle for the village of Elhareri in the central province of Hiran, Somali Defence Minister Abdullahi Mohamed Noor said in Mogadishu on Friday.

The area around the village is now back under government control, Noor said.

The government in Mogadishu has been enacting a military offensive against al-Shabab for several months.

The insurgents control large parts of central Somalia and the south of the country.

However, with the support of armed clans and civilians, the Somali government has recently been able to make major territorial gains.

The extremists now increasingly rely on targeted attacks.

Only last Saturday, two suicide bombers killed at least 120 people after detonating two car bombs in front of the education ministry in the centre of Mogadishu.

The incident was the most serious attack in the country in about five years.

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