Kenya navy shells Somali port town

2012-09-04 18:54
Kismayo Somalia (File)

Kismayo Somalia (File)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Nairobi - The Kenyan Navy shelled Somalia's port town of Kismayo, the remaining significant stronghold of al-Qaeda-linked militants, in preparation for the ground forces to capture the town, a Kenyan military official said on Tuesday.

Cyrus Oguna said that seven people believed to be members of the al-Shabaab militia group were killed in the shelling that occurred on Saturday and Monday and that targeted an arms cache, a mounted gun position and a roadblock set up by the militants.

Oguna says Kenyan ground troops are moving closer to Kismayo in preparation of an assault to take over the port town.

Earlier this year Kenyan commanders vowed to take Kismayo by August but the movement of the troops was bogged down by the need to attend to people in the towns they liberated from al-Shabaab, Kenyan officials say.

Last week, Kenyan troops took over the town of Miido. Oguna said the troops are now about 90km from Kismayo.

Al-Shabaab militants are waging an insurgency against the UN-backed government that is being bolstered by African Union troops, including Kenyan forces.

The Ugandan military forms the bulk of the African Union forces in Somalia. Ugandan and Burundian forces pushed al-Shabaab out of Mogadishu, the capital, about a year ago. Kenya and Burundi have also dispatched to troops to fight al-Shabaab, which neighbouring countries view as a regional threat.

The Islamist militants are now concentrated in Kismayo in the southern coast town.

Somalia has not had a fully functioning government since clan-based warlords' toppled dictator Mohamed Siad Barre in 1991, but slow progress is being made. The adoption of a new constitution was the first step last month in bringing about political change.

A new parliament and speaker were chosen recently and those leaders are to vote on a new president by 10 September.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
Read more on:    al-shabaab  |  kenya  |  somalia  |  uganda  |  east africa publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Romania rally to down Canada
Lancaster upbeat over Burgess's union future
LIVE: Fiji v Uruguay
Scotland primed for Samoa

Are you burning the candle at both ends? Listen to your body and your emotional reactions. Know when to slow down or stop. It is more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.