Monday, November 19, 2007

Insurgents attack Ugandan troops in Somali capital

by Aweys Yusuf from Reuters

Islamist rebels firing grenades attacked Ugandan peacekeepers early on Saturday in Mogadishu and briefly entered their base, but a spokesman for the African Union force said it suffered no casualties. The overnight raid, which set off a 90-minute battle, took place two days after a fugitive Islamist commander believed to be al Qaeda's man in the Somali capital ordered his fighters to target the Ugandans and kill their officers. About 1,600 Ugandan soldiers have been in the city since March to support a fragile interim government backed by the West, the United Nations and regional power Ethiopia. The local authorities and their Ethiopian military allies have faced an Iraq-style insurgency of roadside bombings and political killings since the start of the year when they drove a hardline sharia courts group out of the capital ... Islamist commander Aden Hashi Ayro, in hiding since the Islamists were routed in January, accused Ethiopia and Uganda of invading and said all other African troops sent to Somalia would face holy war.

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