Al-Jazeerah: Cross-Cultural Understanding
News, July 2009
15 Somalis Killed in Mogadishu Clashes
July 11, 2009
Senior Somali gov't official among 15 dead in Mogadishu clashes
MOGADISHU, July 11 (Xinhua) --
Up to 15 people including a senior Somali government official were killed and almost 43 others mostly civilians were wounded on Saturday in fierce fighting between Islamist rebels and Somali government forces in Mogadishu, officials and medics said.
Nur Hassan Ali, popularly known as Nur Daqleh, head of Security for Mogadishu regional administration, was killed in one of the battles between Somali government forces and Islamist insurgent fighters in Abdelaziz district in north Mogadishu, Deputy Mayor of Mogadishu confirmed to Xinhua.
Ali Muse, a paramedic and official from a local ambulance services, said nearly fourteen people mostly civilians caught in the cross fire also died in the clashes around the interim headquarters of Somali parliament while 43 others were also ferried to the main hospital in Mogadishu.
Doctors and nurses at Medina hospital, Mogadishu's main hospital, where the wounded were taken, also confirmed the casualty figures.
The fighting Saturday comes a day after the expiry of the five-day ultimatum announced last week by the Al Shabaab Islamist movement for Somali government officials and security forces surrender to the group, a call dismissed by Somali government.
The clashes which broke out in the early hours of the morning rapidly spread to new areas around the north of the restive Somali capital of Mogadishu where Somali government forces were based, further shrinking the already limited area under Somali government control.
The Islamist Al Shabaab movement considered a terrorist organization by Somali government officials controls much of southern and central Somalia where they implement a strict form of Islamic Sharia law.
The group wants establish an Islamic state after toppling the internationally recognized but weak Somali government which is propped up by small contingent of African Union peacekeeping forces based in Mogadishu, the Somali capital.
Editor: Mu Xuequan
At least 10 killed in Somalia clashes
Sat Jul 11, 2009, 2:38 pm ET
MOGADISHU (AFP) –
More than 10 people were killed Saturday in fighting in Mogadishu between Somali insurgents and troops of Somalia's beleaguered government, police and hospital sources said.
The fighting broke out in the northern district of Manbolyo when the rebels attacked a government position, police officer Abdulahi Dale told AFP.
"The fighting left more than 10 people dead so far but most of them are the combattants," he said. "Our forces are still in defensive positions and we have killed many (rebels).
The head of the Mogadishu ambulance service, Ali Muse, said, "We have seen around 11 people who died during the clashes this morning and the ambulances so far admitted 37 injured civilians in the hospitals."
The authorities could not confirm reports that a senior government military officer was among those killed.
Both sides claimed successes, with a spokesman for the government forces, Farhan Mohamed Arsanyo, showing journalists what he said was the body of an Afghan commander of the insurgents.
He was killed early Saturday in clashes in the northern Mogadishu district of Karan, Arsanyo said, adding, "We have nine others, some of them alive, and we will show (them) to the media."
Mohamed Osman, a commander from the rebel Hizb Al-Islamiya, replied, "What they are claiming is totally untrue, but I confirm that we have killed their officials this morning and including their commanders of the fighting."
Hizb Al-Islamiya and Shabab, a hardline Islamist armed group, launched an offensive against the internationally-backed administration of President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed on May 7.
More than 200,000 people have been displaced in the past two months, while hundreds of civilians are believed to have been killed and wounded, according to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.
A Shabab official Saturday denied a report that Islamist fighters had beheaded two men for supporting Ahmed's government.
"The information indicating that several people had been beheaded by Shabab is totally baseless and nobody has been executed", Sheik Mahad Omar, in charge of the central Bay and Bakol regions, told reporters.
Sources on Friday told AFP the men had been decapitated on Wednesday near Baidoa, a town in southern Somalia controlled by the militia.
The Shabab, fighting to oust Sharif, have imposed strict sharia, or Islamic law in areas under their control.
Last month Shabab militiamen chopped off the right hand and left foot of four people found guilty of theft by their court in Mogadishu.
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said in Geneva Friday that both sides were suspected to have committed war crimes.
"UN human rights staff have received credible reports that in areas controlled by insurgent groups, ad hoc tribunals are judging and sentencing civilians without due process and in violation of Somali as well as international law," her office said.
Punishments handed down by such tribunals include death sentences by stoning or decapitation, it added.
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