9 killed in So­mali Army and po­lice clashes

Arab News - - INTERNATIONAL -

MOGADISHU: Fight­ing be­tween the mil­i­tary and po­lice backed by in­tel­li­gence forces killed nine peo­ple in the So­mali cap­i­tal on Saturday, po­lice said.

“It seems they mis­took the So­mali na­tional army for (clan) mili­tias. The death toll is nine peo­ple in­clud­ing a civil­ian,” Maj. Ab­dul­lahi Hus­sein, a po­lice of­fi­cer, told Reuters.

He said the fight­ing oc­curred be­cause po­lice were wrongly in­formed that there were armed mili­tias in the area.

“Ac­ci­dents hap­pen,” he said. So­ma­lia has been riven by civil war since 1991, when clan-based war­lords over­threw a dic­ta­tor then turned against each other.

The weak UN-backed govern­ment is now bat­tling in­sur­gency, but many mem­bers of its se­cu­rity forces are badly trained and co­or­di­na­tion is poor.

“Last night se­cu­rity forces (the po­lice and in­tel­li­gence) be­sieged us and then opened fire. We de­fended our­selves and chased the so-called se­cu­rity forces af­ter hours of fight­ing to­day. We lost two sol­diers and a wife of my col­league,” Maj. Nur Os­man, a mil­i­tary of­fi­cer, told Reuters on Saturday.

“The land be­longs to the mil­i­tary, it houses the fam­i­lies of sol­diers. How­ever, the se­cu­rity forces were try­ing to force us off the land,” he said.

Res­i­dents said the fight­ing was ter­ri­fy­ing.

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