Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Somalia: Islamists Lost All Central And Bia Provinces in Somalia

Somalia's Islamic Courts Union have deserted several strategic towns in central and southern parts of the country. Islamists in Mogadishu said they retreated from Bur Hakaba, Dinsor and Daynunay near the government base of Baidoa to change military tactics.

Ethiopian troops, accompanied by government forces, occupied all strategic towns: Galkayo, Bandiradley, Adado, Buloburte and Baledweyn lying in central Somalia. Apparently, Islamists have also admitted they lost Bai provincial towns and tiny villages near the main town of Baidoa to Ethiopian backed government troops.

Witnesses say Hundreds of Ethiopian troops along with their tanks have taken up Adado in Galgadud region, central Somalia.

No Ethiopian air bombardments have been reported on Tuesday.

Sheik Ibrahim Suley, Islamic Courts spokesman, said the ICU fighters have left Bur Hakaba, stating the Ethiopian invaders would regret. "The Ethiopians have attacked our country and they will lose," he said.

Residential militias in Abudwaq have taken control of the town on Monday evening after Islamist fighters left the town in fear of Ethiopian military attacks.

Islamic Courts Union seized the capital Mogadishu in early June this year after forcefully evicting US-backed warlords from Mogadishu and then expanded their military might into swathe of central and southern parts of Somalia, threatening they would also capture the only town under the government control.

Reliable sources in Kalkayo indicate that at least 50 Islamists were brought to the town of Kalkayo and slain by the Ethiopian forces that seized the town from the ICU fighters. Local ordinary and business people have organized mass burial for the dead.

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