At least 13 Al-Shabaab militants were on Tuesday killed following a multi-agency security operation under Kenya Defence Forces in Jubaland, reports have emerged.
Abdi Nur Ibrahim Hussein, Jubbaland security forces spokesman told journalists that the offensive was carried out by the Somali army, Jubbaland state forces and KDF in many villages in Jamame town as the forces inflicted severe casualties on the militants and drove them out of the town.
“Our forces moved from Bar Sanguni area passing through many villages in Jamame and the fiercest resistance from the militants happened in Koban village, but we finally defeated the extremists killing 13 of them and burnt their vehicles and recovered many weapons and ammunition,” Hussein said.
According to the security boss, a number of soldiers who took part in the operation sustained serious injuries and are being treated. The operation led to capturing of many villages.
“Three of our soldiers sustained injuries during the operation in which we captured many villages in Jamame including Koban,” he added. Locals reported witnessing intense clashes in the town.
Jubaland is one of most stable states in troubled Somalia. It's under KDF ally Sheikh Ahmed Madobe, who was re-elected in August at the region's president.
KDF, which is operating under AMISOM, mans Sector 6 and 2 of Jubaland. It has been responsible for training of SNA and Jubaland forces.
Incidentally, the death of the militants comes at the time Jubaland is at loggerheads with federal government. On Thursday, the state's leadership wrote to Mogadishu, accusing President Mohammed Farmaajo of plans to distabilise the region.
Mogadishu administration accuses Kenya of imposing Ahmed Madobe on the people of Jubaland. Recently, the federal government suspended all direct flights to Kismayo.
And in what seems to be simmering relationship between Nairobi and Mogadishu over Jubaland, Somalia also opposed Kenya's bid to have Al-Shabaab listed as a terrorists group.