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Clashes in Somalia Kill 7 Soldiers - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Over seven people were reported killed in a weekend fighting between soldiers from two semi-autonomous regions of Somalia, officials from both sides said on Sunday, sparking fears of wider conflict.

The clashes which broke out on Saturday pitted forces from Puntland with those of Galmudug, the latest flare-up over a disputed area straddling their border.
The two sides are fighting in the town of Galkayo, which is divided between clan militias loyal to the different regions.

Hirsi Yusuf Barre, the mayor of Galkayo south, accused soldiers from Puntland of launching attacks first on Saturday.

“We lost three soldiers and 11 others were injured. We burnt three vehicles belonging to Puntland,” he told Reuters on Sunday.

Major Mohamed Ibrahim, a military officer in Puntland, said four soldiers were killed on their side and seven others were injured.
“We have repulsed them,” he said.

Residents in the area said Galkayo was calm on Sunday but soldiers from both factions were seen reorganising themselves for more clashes.

Earlier this month, the United Nations said the conflict could worsen and clashes had already displaced around 50,000 people. Somalia has been at civil war for 25 years and clashes between the clan-based militias who control much of the country are common.

In the south, forces loyal to the weak U.N.-backed government are also battling extremist insurgents.

Asharq Al-Awsat English

Asharq Al-Awsat English

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

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