Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Shabaab Faces Major Defeat in Somalia

The al-Shabaab Islamist movement has been dealt a heavy blow in Somalia. The branch of al Qaeda has been driven out of the town of Baidoa, which had been one of its strongholds. It has also been removed from the country's capital, Mogadishu. The city was captured by a joint Ethiopian-Somali expedition.

Witnesses say that after fierce fighting on Tuesday, al-Shabab fighters pulled out of Baidoa - which was then taken on Wednesday without a battle.

BBC Somali service analyst Abdullahi Sheikh says Baidoa is a big loss to al-Shabab, as the main road linking Mogadishu to the south-west and parts of Kenya and Ethiopia passes through the city.

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