Somali Government Says Al-Shabaab Defeated in Galmudug and Hirshabelle, Moves to Puntland

The Somali government announced that it defeated Al-Shabaab militants in Galmudug and Hirshabelle, forcing the fighters to move to Puntland.

Deputy Minister of Information Abdirahman Yusuf Al-Addaala told VOA Somali radio that the federal government attacked Al-Shabaab because they were planning attacks in Puntland. He said the operation targeted the leaders of Al-Shabaab in their camps.

The government said that Al-Shabaab was beaten in battles in Galmudug and Hirshabelle, and now the militants have gathered in the mountains of eastern Puntland.

Al-Addaala said the operation was a team effort between the federal government and Puntland regional forces. He mentioned that this operation had been planned for a while.

“We have been watching their movements closely. After their big defeat in Hirshabelle and Galmudug, some of the fighters moved to Puntland, and we have been tracking them,” said Al-Addaala.

The minister did not say whether Puntland’s top officials knew about the operation.

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