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Al-Shabaab move into northern Somalia port town

Storyline:National News

Residents in central Somalia say heavily armed suspected al-Shabab militants have arrived at their coastal Town and exchanged gunfire with local militias Monday afternoon.

‘’They landed from the sea and immediately took control of the whole town. They told us that they will be here for six days and have warned that they will kill any armed person,’’ said one of the residents who spoke to Goobjoog News.

Nearly 200 Al Shabaab gunmen on boats were spotted in the Indian Ocean town of Garacad.

“Five boatloads of Al Shabaab fighters are said to have docked in Garacad,” the source said.

As soon the news broke out, the village’s communication with the outside world was cut off, making details unavailable.

Mayor of Garacad told the local media that foreign fighters are among the militants that have seized the town.

The capture of Garacad has been confirmed by Mudug Governor Hassan Khalif Mohamed.

Elsewhere, our correspondent in the town of Galkayo says that Puntland authorities have prepared troops to launch a major battle to retake the town in the coming hours.

Al-Shabaab, the al-Qaeda-aligned militia in Somalia, is experiencing some of the most successful months of its recent history.

Until recently, many had been tempted to suggest that the group was on its last legs as it faced a seemingly overwhelming military force in the form of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and SNA.