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Somali gvt, AU condemns deadly Al-Shabaab attack on ATMIS base in El-Baraf

Storyline:National News

GOOBJOOG NEWS|MOGADISHU: The Somali government and the African Union have strongly condemned the heinous Al-Shabaab attack aimed at a base housing Burundi troops in El-Baraf Middle Shabelle on Tuesday morning.

A statement from the Somali government condoled with the families of the victims of the terror attack, the African Union and the government of Burundi, wishing the injured a speedy recovery.

The Federal Government of Somalia commended the Somali National Army and ATMIS forces for staging a strong defense against the terrorists and appealed to the international community to increase and provide higher-end capability support to the Somali Security forces and ATMIS in effectively combatting terrorism in Somalia.

Meanwhile, the Chairperson of the Africa Union Moussa Faki Mahamat, has also condemned the attack in the strongest terms possible, stating that  the heinous attack will not lessen the determination of ATMIS forces but reaffirmed the continued and unwavering commitment of the AU to support the Somali Government and people in their pursuit to achieve sustainable peace and security.

Moussa Faki paid tribute to the Burundian peacekeepers who lost their lives and condoled with the bereaved families, the Government and the people of the Republic of Burundi, wishing a speedy recovery to the wounded.

The Chairperson echoed the Somali government’s call on the international community to increase support to the troubled Horn of Africa’s security services and the ATMIS mission commensurate with the security challenges at hand.

Immediately after the attack, Al-Shabaab released a video showing bodies of soldiers and captured military hardware, including armored vehicles. The group claimed to have killed 59 Burundian troops, later raising the figure to 173, adding that they had taken several soldiers hostage, although neither claim can be independently verified.

However, a high-ranking Burundian military officer told AFP that about 30 soldiers were killed and another 22 wounded, while a dozen were missing.

The assault on Burundian soldiers has been described as the deadliest attack on African troops since the El Adde attack in 2016, which claimed nearly 200 Kenyan peacekeepers.