Somalia's National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA) said on Tuesday evening that a senior al-Shabab official has surrendered to the government forces.
According to NISA, Aden Abdi, known as Aden Obe, defected from the extremist group and surrendered to the government forces on Tuesday.
"Adan Obe, a senior official of al-Shabab extremists who has been in the group for long time contacted NISA and asked to facilitate his surrender," said NISA.
Ali Ya'qub Nur, a senior military officer of government forces in Bardhere in the country's southern region of Gedo, told journalists that NISA contacted them and asked to cooperate with Abdi for him to surrender to the government forces.
"Aden Obe who has been a member of al-Shabab informed us that he was in conflict with the group and willing to join government forces," said Nur, adding that the senior official was accompanied by one of his special guards and both are in the hand of government forces.
Somali forces backed by the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) intensified operations on al-Shabab militants in central and southern Somalia conducting consecutive offensives to flush the militants out of these regions.