Amisom engages Somali herders after 25 camels killed in ambush

The African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) admitted that its forces in Lower Shabelle region killed 25 camels on Saturday.

Amisom spokesman, Lt Colonel Joe Kibet told Somali News Network (SONNA) Sunday that militants loyal to the jihadist group Al-Shabaab ambushed Amisom troops at Wareer-Maleh, near Barawe town, 200 km south of the Somali capital Mogadishu.

He added that the Islamists employed explosions in the assault against the AU peacekeepers, which lead to heavy exchange of fire.

“In the course of the confrontation that lasted for sometime caused the death of 25 camels and injuries to 4 more animals,” said Lt Col Kibet.

“The animals were grazing in the area of the confrontations,” the spokesman added, confirming that two peacekeepers were wounded.

The spokesman reiterated that Amisom is in discussion with the local authority on what happened and the circumstances surrounding the killing of the camels.

Currently, Somali livestock sector is the largest contributor to country's economy with over 65 per cent of the population engaged in the industry in some way.

In 2011 for example, with almost 4 million exported, the Horn of Africa country was the world’s leading exporter of sheep and goats, according to FAO data.

The Al-Qaeda linked Al-Shabaab had lost most of the districts in Southern and Central regions of Somalia, but still control large swathes of rural areas, waging attacks on government forces and African Union troops.

Five countries, namely Uganda, Burundi, Kenya, Djibouti and Ethiopia have contributed to the 22,000 strong force that operate in Somalia in order to stabilize the war-ravaged Horn of Africa country.

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