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Residents said deadly bombs landed in the outskirts of the strategic town of Beled hawo, failing to hit the military targets.
“Last night, huge explosions caused by mortars were heard in areas near the town. The tension is high, many residents fled from the town since the offensive began last Sunday,” Abdi Ali told Somalia Report.
“Al-shabaab was targeting the new bases of the Ahlu sunna but unsuccessfully lost the targets,” he added.
Al-shabaab said that they have killed several government soldiers after firing 20 mortars.
Officials from Ahlu Sunna confirmed the incident, however, denied Al-Shabaab claims, denied any of their fighters were killed.
Pro-Somali government forces backed by Ethiopian forces seized the Balad-Hawo town last week from the Al-Shabbab militants who took control of the area in Jan 2009.
Ahlu Sunnah and Al-Shabaab, which both control large swathes of southern and central regions, have been engaged in deadly power struggle in the recent days.