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The Transitional Federal Government’s governor for the border region of Gedo, Mohamed Abdi Kalil, told Somalia Report and other media that Shangole was one of several senior al-Shabaab leaders killed when the insurgents attacked the town. It was not possible to verify the claim, despite a string of calls to al-Shabaab and government officials.
“You gave false information to the people, I am here to deter you and the USA,” the Swedish-Somali Shangole told reporters in Mogadishu. “You didn’t kill me; I will die when Allah says.”
Shangole spent 12 years in Sweden as an asylum seeker, working as an Imam, before returning to join the Islamic Court Union. When Ethiopian forces ousted the Islamist regime in 2006, Shangole joined the al-Shabaab insurgency. According to Swedish media, he was personally involved in stoning to death a 13-year-old girl and cutting off the hand of a man accused of theft.
Local sources told Somalia Report dozens of combatants were killed when hundreds of al-Shabaab fighters launched mortar attacks and waves of ground troops against the forces of the TFG and moderate Islamist militia Ahlu Sunna wal Jamaa (ASWJ) in Garbaharey Monday
Sources close to al-Shabaab in Bardera, south of Garbaharey, confirmed some senior officials were among the dead - one of them al-Shabaab regional head of public awareness, Sheikh Mohamed Mohamoud.
The government has been making gains in Gedo, a region that borders Kenya and Ethiopia, seizing key towns from al-Shabaab. The militants have shifted to ambushes, laying landmines and launching hit-and-run attacks in an attempt to halt the advance.