Peacekeepers serving in the African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) and Somali forces have captured Lanta Bur, a strategic militia training ground for radical Islamist group Al-Shabaab, officials said.
The Governor of Lower Shabelle region, Mr Abdulkadir Mohamed Nur Sidee, told the media that the pro-government troops were moving into more territory including Muri, a settlement next to the road linking the Somali capital Mogadishu and Marka town, 110km to the south.
“Our forces made a strategic move this morning (Wednesday),” stated Mr Sidee.
He added that the pro-government forces would not halt advances until Marka town, the capital of Lower Shabelle region was seized.
“In late June, some fighting between the pro-government forces and the terrorist militias took place around Lanta Bur,” stated Mr Sidee.
“But, fortunately we have succeeded to capture it today,” he added.
A former high security prison for the military regime in the 1970s and 1980s, Lanta Bur has in recent years been used by Al-Shabaab militant as a training centre.