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AMISOM refutes allegations of civilian deaths in Marka town

Storyline:National News, Security


The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) has refuted allegations that its troops killed civilians in Marka yesterday as widely reported in the media.

In a terse statement to the media, AMISOM said its troops did not kill any civilian but instead killed five Al-Shabaab fighters whom it had engaged in a gun fight Tuesday morning.

“I would like to state that at about 8:45am today, AMISOM troops on regular patrols encountered an Al Shabaab training center at Juujomo, close to El Hindi Village. In the ensuing gun battle to dislodge the terrorists, as AMISOM is mandated to do, five Al Shabaab fighters were killed including one of their notorious leaders, Mohammed Dahir,” read the statement.

Media reports yesterday quoted sources that between 10 and 20 people were killed in the coastal town of Marka when AMISOM soldiers opened fire on locals killing them and leaving others with injuries. However AMISOM says the reports are unfounded and that no civilian was killed during the incident.

“It is instructive to also mention the fact that two riffles, an Improvised Explosive Device (IED), an instruction board and the Al Shabaab flag were also recovered from the scene,” asserted AMISOM.

A medical source in Marka hospital told Goobjoog News they had received recorded two casualties and seven others injured. However there were reports that up to 16 civilians were killed elsewhere in the town.

“For the avoidance of doubt, AMISOM would like to reiterate that, in line with our Rules of Engagement (RoE) which are in consonance with International Humanitarian Law (IHL), our troops are under obligation to avoid civilian casualties and to exercise maximum restraint even under imminent attack. And it is in this regard that in this particular event, AMISOM categorically denounces this devious allegation especially as our troops were not involved in this alleged killing of civilians in Marka Town. AMISOM will continue to conduct patrols to ensure the safety and security of the population in the area,” said AMISOM.