Somalia: Prime Minister Calls for Dialogue to Ease Political Tension

(file photo).

Somalia's Prime Minster Mohamed Hussein Roble has called for dialogue to avert further armed confrontation, just two days after clashes broke out in the capital Mogadishu.

After meeting members of the civil society, the premier urged all sides to refrain from acts of violence.

On Sunday, armed men in military uniforms occupied parts of the northern suburbs of Mogadishu, challenging the government's security personnel. They declared support for the opposition groups against President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo.

The positions they occupied included the so-called Marinaayo (Marines) near the residence of former president Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud.

Government security agencies went to expel the rebels, leading to heavy exchange of fire.

Later on, fighting was reported in the southern suburbs of Mogadishu, especially in Hodon district where Abdurahman Abdishkur Warsame, the outspoken leader of Wadjir Party, has been residing since late last week.

"We are in self-defence against an attacking government force," Warsame told the local media, stating that he is surrounded by armed supporters.

The fighting spilled to the strategic Maka-al-Mukarama Avenue, but stopped after past midnight.

There was no official count of casualties and officials of the voluntary emergency service provider in Mogadishu, Aamin Ambulance, said they were prevented from reaching the areas where conflict broke out but they managed to take three injured civilians to hospital.

Opposition supporters put up barricades in Abdulaziz district in northern Mogadishu and in Hodon district in the southern part of the city. Government forces are stationed near the barricades.

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