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Al-Shabab appoints new leader after Godane

Storyline:National News

Al-Shabab group has named Ahmad Umar as successor to Ahmed Abdi Godane, who was killed in a US air strike on Monday.

The group announced the move in an online statement, vowing to take revenge for Godane’s death.

Somalia’s authorities earlier put the country on alert for possible retaliatory attacks by al-Shabab.

The alert came as the US confirmed the death of Godane in air strikes south of Mogadishu on Monday night.

‘Bitter consequences’

Little is known about Ahmad Umar, who is also known as Abu Ubaidah.

Abu Mohammed, one of al-Shabab’s commanders, said the decision to appoint him was unanimous.

In a statement, al-Shabab also warned: “Avenging the death of our scholars and leaders is a binding obligation on our shoulders that we will never relinquish nor forget no matter how long it takes.”

“By the permission of Allah, you will surely taste the bitter consequences of your actions.”

The announcement of the new leader came just minutes after al-Shabab themselves confirmed the death of Godane.

Earlier on Saturday, Somali National Security Minister Kalif Ahmed Ereg told reporters: “Security agencies have obtained information indicating that al-Shabab is now planning to carry out desperate attacks against medical facilities, education centres and other government facilities.”

Mr Ereg “congratulated the Somali people” on Godane’s death, adding: “The security forces are ready to counter their attacks and we call on people to help the security forces in standing against violent acts.”

Source: BBC