MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Kenya’s warplanes on Saturday conducted new air strikes in south Somalia, targeting rural areas inhabited by pastoralist communities in Gedo region, months after similar air raids triggered the ire of authorities in the region.
Residents in villages and rural areas surrounding the town of Elwak say they have seen a number of Kenyan fighter jets flying low on Saturday, before a number of villages were bombed overnight.
Warbele, Buralaha-Samaroole and Golgola Ali were among the areas in Gedo region targeted by the renewed Kenyan air strike.
A number of civilians, mainly pastoralists, are said to have been killed and many more wounded, though the exact number of casualties has not been immediately clear. The area has no access to hospitals and other basic health services.
Pastoralist communities in the areas pounded by strikes began to flee their homes due to fear of repeat in similar attacks, in an area already riven by frequent assaults on civilians by Kenyan troops.
Somalia earlier accused Kenya’s military of indiscriminate air strikes aimed at killing civilians and their livestock in the restive southern Somalia region, though Kenyan Defense Forces (KDF) repeatedly denied the allegations.
Dozens of civilians and hundreds of livestock were killed in the past in similar air strikes conducted by the Kenyan military in Gedo and neighboring regions.
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