Clashes kill 12, injure 30 in Somalia

Clashes kill 12, injure 30 in Somalia
# 04 November 2010 18:24 (UTC +04:00)
Baku-APA. Heavy clashes between pro-government troops and al-Shabab fighters have left at least 12 people dead and 30 others wounded in the Somali capital, APA reports quoting Press TV.

Nine Somali soldiers were killed on Thursday after al-Shabab fighters raided two government military bases in Mogadishu’s northern district of Boondheere.

At least 22 troops were wounded in the ambush, a Press TV correspondent reported from Mogadishu.

Elsewhere in the district, similar clashes claimed the lives of three civilian bystanders, wounding eight others who were caught in the crossfire.

The fighters managed to capture several military vehicles as well as munitions from Somali soldiers.

The latest report by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) says thousands of civilians have been injured in recent months in clashes throughout the Horn of Africa country.

The Geneva-based humanitarian institution said that a total of 5,000 patients with war injuries, including 1,900 women and children, were admitted to Mogadishu’s Keysaney and Medina hospitals from January through September.

Compared to last year, the figures suggest an increase of 25 percent in the total number of war casualties and 72 percent in the number of hospitalized women and children.

Some 4,000 patients with war injuries, among them 1,100 women and children, were taken to Mogadishu’s two referral hospitals in 2009.

Somalia has lacked a functioning government since 1991, when warlords overthrew former dictator Mohamed Siad Barre.

Over the past two decades, up to one million people have lost their lives in fighting between rival factions and due to famine and disease.

There are more than 1.4 million internally displaced people in Somalia. Over 300,000 of this uprooted population are sheltering in Mogadishu.

Most of the displaced live in poor and degrading conditions in makeshift camps in southern and central Somalia, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.