Mogadishu: Witnesses say at least 12
people have been killed in Somalia`s capital in fighting
between government forces and an Islamic militia group.
The witnesses said five government soldiers, four
fighters from an al-Qaida-linked group and three civilians
died during the one-hour battle today.
Government officials, though, deny any of their
soldiers were killed. Al-Shabab spokesman Sheik Ali Mohamud
Rage declined to comment on casualties.
The battle began when al-Shabab fighters attacked a
government base in the southwest Mogadishu area of Dharkenlay.
Islamist insurgents have been trying to topple
Somalia`s Western-backed government for three years. They now
control large parts of the country`s centre and south.