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08 Apr 2020 | 12:28 PM UTC

Somalia: AMISOM troops targeted in militant attack in Balcad district (Middle Shabelle region) April 8

At least four AMISOM troops killed in suspected Al-Shabaab attack in Balcad district (Middle Shabelle region) April 8; further attacks possible in the near term

security
SOM

Event

At least four African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM) troops were killed in a suspected Al-Shabaab attack in Middle Shabelle region on Wednesday, April 8. AMISOM forces were reportedly patrolling the Gololey area of Balcad district when two improvised explosive devices (IED) detonated. Gunfire between the militants and troops ensued.

Separately, reports indicate that an IED attack on Somali Federal Government forces led to the deaths of five troops on Wednesday. The incident reportedly occurred between Janaale and Buufow (Lower Shabelle region).

A heightened security presence is to be expected in the vicinity of the attacks. Similar incidents are to be expected in Somalia over the near term.

Context

Al-Shabaab continues to exercise effective control over large zones in the south and center of Somalia and attacks from the group are frequent across the country, including in Mogadishu. The group often targets government officials and military infrastructure in a bid to topple the West- and UN-backed government and impose its own strict interpretation of Islam in Somalia.

Advice

Individuals in Somalia are advised to remain vigilant for militant activity and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.

The security environment in Somalia remains complex. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.