Somalia’s President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud called Monday on the Army to be prepared for the second phase of the offensive operation against terrorist militants remaining in the country.
Meanwhile the Somali News Agency, Sonna, quoted official sources as saying that more than 40 members of al-Qaeda-linked Shabaab militants were killed in battles in the northeast of Somalia.
The agency said 43 members of the Kharijite (the term the Somali government uses to refer to the Islamist group) were killed during bloody battles that took place last Monday among terrorist groups in the Golis Mountains, northeast Somalia.
The sources added that during the attack, three Al-Shabaab leaders were killed. “ISIS militias defeated the Khawarij and controlled the area where the two extremist groups were fighting,” the sources affirmed.
Meanwhile, the Military Court of Somalia’s Puntland State sentenced ten Al-Shabaab members to death by firing squad on Sunday for committing terrorist operations in several regions.
Two of the accused, Adde Abdullahi Mohamed Elmi and Abdiqani Suleyman Jama Saylor, were convicted of the murder of freelance radio journalist Jamal Farah Adan in Galkaayo. Both men received the death sentence after exhausting all appeal options.
Early this month, 13 people from al-Shabaab and ISIS were executed by firing squad in Somalia’s northeastern state of Puntland.
Separately, the Somali President praised on Sunday the Army for gaining success in the fight against Al-Shabaab militants and ordered them to be prepared for the second phase of the offensive operation against the terrorists who still remain in western parts of Middle Shabelle and Hiiraan region under Hirshabelle State in Somalia.
Mohamud, together with a Government delegation, and Hir-Shabelle State President, Ali Gudlawe Hussein visited the Aden Yabal district in the Middle Shabelle region where he met with community members and listened to a report on the living conditions.
Aden Yabal was Al-Shabaab’s major stronghold in the past 15 years.
“The withdrawal of Al-Shabaab movement from the strategic city of Aden Yibal means that it was militarily and economically defeated,” the President said, explaining that the region was the most important economic stronghold for the terrorist group.
“This is clear evidence of the inability of the Kharijites to militarily confront the national army,” he said, adding that the militants have failed to find a safe haven and that their ideology threats against the local population have ended.