Somalia: Puntland government ‘ready to combat influx of militants’

Published: November 20, 2014
Puntland Defense forces
Puntland Defense forces

A top intelligence official has revealed that Puntland government has launched an operation to clear out al-Shabaab militants from the stable semi-autonomous region of Somalia.

Puntland Intelligence agency director Abdi Hassan Hussein told reporters that since al-Shabaab lost its main base in Galgala mountain ranges, the militants started to flee to the urban areas.

He added that the fighters are ‘’regrouping’’ and ‘’planning’’ to carry out attacks in the region.

‘’ Residents should be aware that there are number of militants who flee to the towns… the residents should report to the police if they come across any danger or threat,’’ he said.

The conflict between Puntland and al-Shabaab linked militants had started in 2010, dozens from both sides died since when and displacement of hundreds of families. Al-Shabab officials have in several occasions threatened to carry out attacks in the region which has seen relative security since the civil war broke out in the country 1991.

In October, Puntland defence forces secured the key base from the al-Qaeda linked militant group after a fierce battle.

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