MOGADISHU - Somali government on Wednesday dismissed claims by the al-Shabab group to have killed five government soldiers during an operation in southwest Baidoa region.
Ismael Mukhtar Omar, the government spokesman said there were no clashes on Wednesday morning at a military base at Deynunay village 25 km south of Baidoa as claimed by the militant group.
"It's a baseless propaganda, no clashes have taken place in the last 24 hours," Omar told Xinhua.
His remarks came after al-Shabab said its fighters overran a military base at Deynunay village near Baidoa killing five government soldiers including two commanders in the attack.
According to al-Shabab, military vehicles were also destroyed during the fighting.
The militant group has been engaging the government forces in near-daily attacks in its bid to overthrow the government. But the Somali and partner forces have intensified military operations into territory formerly controlled by al-Shabab after driving the insurgents out of Mogadishu in 2011.