Puntland Security Forces kill 16 insurgents


Somali security forces said they killed 18 Islamist insurgents during an operation in northern Puntland, although militants deny sustaining any casualties.

“We killed 18 militants and burnt six bases in Galgala hills in an operation over four days to eliminate al Shabaab,” said Colonel Mohamed Ismail, a senior officer in the Puntland Security Force.
“We also took their weapons. We burned their food and medicine stores.”

Puntland’s security forces are trained and supported by a small number of US operatives based in the semi-autonomous northern region. It was not clear whether the United States had any involvement in the operation.

Al Shabaab, an al-Qaeda-linked insurgent group that wants to impose strict Islamic law, confirmed there was a raid but denied there were any casualties.
“Puntland attacked us today but we repulsed and chased them away. No casualties at all,” Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab, spokesman for al Shabaab’s military wing, said.