Abdi Hajji Hussein – AHN News Correspondent
Monday, March 07, 2011 10:45
Mogadishu, Somalia (AHN) – Mohammed Abdullahi Mohammed, the prime minister of Somalia’s transitional federal government, on Monday departed to New York where he will attend a United Nations meeting on Somalia, an official said.
“Accompanied by Abdiwali Mohammed Ali, the minister of planning and international cooperation for Somali government, the premier is scheduled to address to members of United Nations to give the further recommendations and latest developments about strife-ridden horn of Africa nation,” Mohammed Abullahi Omar, Somalia’s foreign minister explained.
Omar went on to say that the prime minister will inform the UN that Somali government forces had seized strategic towns in southern Somalia, such as the border town of Belet Hawo, and would request the international body to give fresh impetus to providing humanitarian aid for Somalis who were severely affected by the drought that hit many parts of south-central Somalia.
He also indicated Mohammed will ask for help for the government in an attempt to redouble Somali army efforts to purge al Shabaab from the country.
The UN meeting on Somalia is scheduled for Thursday.
Separately, Somali pro-government forces joined by moderate Ahlu Sunna Waljama’ fighters have made more advances, purging al Shabaab from the towns of Luq and Elwaq in the Gedo region of southern Somalia, Ahmed Mohamoud Abdulle, a military officer in Luq, told All Headline News by telephone.
“About 2 a.m. local time, the fighters of the militant group have run away from Luq town after a dreadful [fate] faced them” Abdulle said.
The seizure of the two towns came on the heels of Somali pro-government troops taking control of the border town of Belet Hawo, a strategic place along the Somalia-Kenya border.
In what is seen an apparent dismantling began within Somalia’s al Qaeda-inspired group, al Shabaab has reportedly abandoned most of the districts of the Gedo region.
Sheikh Ali Mohamoud Rage, the spokesman of al Shabaab, told local media the group had changed tactics, calling on the extremist group’s fighters to prepare for a huge war with what he called the apostate government and African Union forces.
Rage said that a large number of Ethiopian military forces had entered Somalia to support the Somali army.
Late last month, the hard-line group lost key Mogadishu military bases after battles with the Somali army supported by African Union peacekeepers.
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