18 May 2009

Somalia: Islamists Capture Another Strategic Town

Jowhar — Al-Shabab Islamists have captured Mahaday, a strategic town about 23 kilometers (13 miles) north of Jowhar, the regional capital of middle Shabelle Region, witnesses said on Monday.

The seizure of Mahaday and Jowhar towns will be a big blow to the fledgling government of Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed.

Armored vehicles of al-Shabab were seen in Mahaday overnight. It is not known the whereabouts of the Islamic Courts Union who were controlling Middle Shabelle region.

The Islamists seized Jowhar on Sunday after three hours of fighting. Three combatants and civilian was killed in the fighting.

Residents said al-Shabab captured the town with no resistances from the Islamic Courts Union

Three districts of the four districts of Middle Shabelle region has now fallen to the hands of al-Shabab.

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