Roadside Bomb Kills 12 Somali Soldiers

Officials said that 12 members of the Somali security forces were killed and two others wounded on Sunday after a strong roadside explosion in the central state of Galmudug.

According to officials, the attack took place near the village of El Dhere, 28 kilometers west of Dhusamareb city, during a security operation. Dhusamareb is approximately 510 kilometers north of Mogadishu, the Somali capital.

According to VOA, State Information Minister Ahmed Shire Falagle, said that the chief of the intelligence agency in the town of Dhusamareb, Major Abdirashid Abdinur Qoje, was among those killed.

“A vehicle carrying the officer, Qoje, and other soldiers accompanying him were hit by a landmine; the officer and some of the soldiers died, so it was a bomb,” Falagle said.

The extremist group al-Shabab claimed responsibility. The assault marked the second clash in the space of three days between al-Shabab and Somali government forces outside Dhusamareb. Seven militants were murdered by government forces on Friday after mortars were fired into the city as political leaders held an election management conference.

In the early hours of Saturday, the Dhusamareb meeting collapsed after President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo and Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble failed to reach an agreement with the leaders of five federal member states on election management.

As the term of the president ends on Monday, February 8, the lack of agreement plunges the nation into political turmoil.

Following an order from then-President Donald Trump, the United States pulled almost all of its troops from Somalia last month. The U.S. military has continued conducting airstrikes against al-Shabab despite the withdrawal. The U.S. has carried out six airstrikes this year so far, but none since President Joe Biden came to power on January 20th.

Educator, writer and legal researcher at Alafarika for Studies and Consultancy.

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