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Kismayo capture imminent, military spokesmen say
Sabahi Online
Saturday, September 01, 2012

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Military officials say the Somali military, supported by the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), will take Kismayo from al-Shabaab soon, Kenya's Daily Nation reported Thursday (August 30th).

Somali military spokesman for the Juba region Aden Ahmed Hirsi said that troops have nearly surrounded Kismayo. "We are committed to remove [al-Shabaab's] black banner and raise Somalia's blue-colour flag all over Jubaland," he said.

"We are going to employ a carefully crafted strategy to seize Kismayo," said Brigadier General Ismael Sahardeed, commander of Somali forces in Juba. "We are employing military tactics to capture the town within a week."

Their comments follow the seizure of Marka from al-Shabaab on Monday and clashes between Afmadow and Kismayo on Thursday that left 60 al-Shabaab militants dead, according to Sahardeed.

"AMISOM is committed to supporting the peace process in Somalia and this operation will not only bring relief to the population in Marka, but will also help in the liberation of Kismayo,” said AMISOM commander Lieutenant General Andrew Gutti.

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