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At least three people have been killed and more than seven were injured after al-Shabaab militants attacked Somalia Transitional Federal Government (TFG) bases, shared with Kenyan Defense Forces (KDF), in Lower Jubba region.
Witnesses reported the heavy fighting started overnight when al-Shabaab fighters attacked military bases in Qoqani and Tabta settlements, killing three from both sides.
No civilian casualties have been reported, according to Adan Hirsi, a government officer in Qoqani, who vowed to keep pressure on the militant group.
"We will continue the war against al-Shabaab so they can't reach Kismayo, the only strategic town al-Shabaab still controls," he told Somalia Report.
TFG forces, which are 3- 4kms outside Afmadow launched a massive security operation are going village-to-village searching for al-Shabaab militants. Officials added they also plan to proceed with their push towards re-taking the entire Lower Jubba region.
Reports indicate that al-Shabaab officials, after fleeing Afgoye in Lower Shabelle region, have reached Gedo region and are making their way towards their stronghold in Kismayo in Lower Jubba.
Witness in Bay region told Somalia Report that an unidentified number of Ethiopian troops with tanks and other battle wagons have settled in Yurkud district of Gedo region, likely to support the TFG and KDF operations there.