Militants Target Somalia’s Army Chief with Mortar Shells

Somalia army chief

MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Militants targeted Somalia’s army chief Gen. Odowa Yusuf Rage with a barrage of mortar shells on Saturday as he visited a military base outside the coastal town of Kismayo.

Mortar bombs struck Baar-Sanguni base at an area close to the defense lines of Islamist militants, where clashes between Jubaland forces and Al-Shabaab fighters often take place.

Al-Qaeda-aligned group said its fighters had carried out the attack, claiming to have killed 4 soldiers and wounding 9 others.

Gen. Odowa, who was inspecting the base and nearby military camps during a visit to the coastal town, escaped unharmed.

Regional officials and the Somali army have not immediately commented on Al-Shabaab’s claims.

It came just hours after a US military delegation arrived in Kismayo on Saturday and held talks with regional president Ahmed Madobe on efforts to step up the fight against the Al-Qaeda-affiliate as Biden administration weighs sending hundreds of troops withdrawn in January back to Somalia.

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