One soldier killed, two others injured in fierce fight in northern Somalia

MOGADISHU (XINHUA) – At least one soldier was killed and two others were injured on Thursday night in a fierce fight between al-Shabab fighters and security forces in Bosaso town in the northern region of Bari, an official confirmed yesterday.

Police commander in Bari region Hussein Ali Mohamed said al-Shabab militants launched an attack on the main prison facility in Bosaso, but the forces pushed them back.

“There was an intense clash between the army and the attackers, but we overpowered them. We lost one soldier and two others got injured during the fierce fight,” Mohamed said, adding that a number of prisoners escaped but the security forces are pursuing them.

The officer did not say how many al-Shabab fighters were killed during the clashes.

Al-Qaeda allied extremist group al-Shabab, which has been fighting to topple the Somali government, claimed responsibility for the latest brazen attack in the central prison which is holding al-Shabab suspects.

The extremist group said it killed many soldiers and freed over 400 prisoners including militants during the prison break in Bosaso.

Sources said gunfire and explosions could be heard from the prison where most of the inmates in the jail are militants.

“I heard a bomb blast followed by a gunfire attack on Bosaso’s main prison. I did not know what happened but there were casualties on both sides,” Mohamed Ali, a Bosaso resident said on the phone.

This is the first incident that al-Shabab militants have launched a brazen attack on prisons in the semi-autonomous region of Somalia.