Puntland's Minister of Security Khalif Isse Mudan warned on Wednesday (January 2nd) that al-Shabaab was infiltrating the region, adding that his administration would take serious measures against the militant group.
"Al-Shabaab terrorist group is infiltrating Puntland and I urge the public to remain vigilant of terrorists," Mudan said, according to Somalia's Garowe Online. "We are telling the community elders that any person suspected of being an al-Shabaab member will not be released until proven innocent because al-Shabaab is a threat to national security."
He said Puntland administration forces were able to maintain peace in the region and security forces would pursue al-Shabaab elements hiding in the Galgala Mountains.
More than 100 suspected al-Shabaab members were arrested in a security sweep in Galkayo the same day as Mudan's announcement, Somalia's Radio Risaala reported.
Of the 100 suspects, 11 remain in custody for further questioning, said head of the Puntland police department Mohamed Sandaq.