MOGADISHU – At least four al-Shabab militants were killed on Wednesday in an operation conducted by the Somali National Army in Middle and Lower Shabelle regions in southern Somalia, a military official said.
The operation has been going on in the last two days and the army captured many villages in the regions, said commander of the Somali National forces Odawa Yusuf Rage.
"During the operation, we killed four al-Shabab extremists including a senior leader who was in charge of Basra town for the militants and our forces destroyed so-called courts run by the militants," Rage added.
The commander said Somali National Army will intensify military operations against the militants in the coming days.
Meanwhile, six security officers were killed while four others were injured in a landmine attack on their vehicle on the outskirts of Bal'ad town on Wednesday.
Dhame Sadik Adan, police spokesman said the vehicle belonging to the Bal'ad district commissioner was targeted by a roadside bomb following the attack in the town which is about 30 km north of Mogadishu.
"The district commissioner survived the attack since he was not in the vehicle at the time of the attack but six of his bodyguards were killed," Adan said.
The insurgents have stepped up their assault against the government and African Union Mission in Somalia bases across south and central parts of the Horn of African nation, conducting ambushes and planting landmines.