Ethiopian tanks move south

Ethiopian tanks have driven south from Mogadishu to attack fighters of the Islamic courts movement whose leader reportedly urged them to make a stand in Kismayu, a port city in Somalia.

Ethiopian tanks move south
Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys apparently made the call during Friday prayers at a mosque, a day after armed units of his Somalia Islamic Courts Council fled the capital in the face of government troops backed by Ethiopian armour.

Ali Mohamed Gedi, the Somali prime minister, entered Mogadishu on Friday after a 10-day land and air offensive by Ethiopia in support of his weak interim government.

Gedi said that the fight for political survival had been won, but Islamic courts leaders promised resistance.
Ethiopian fighter jets were seen over Kismayu and the nearby town of Jilib on Friday and Saturday, the military expert said.
A Somali government soldier said Islamic courts fighters - accused by Addis Ababa and Washington of being backed by al-Qaeda - had sown the road from Mogadishu with mines as they pulled back.
"We are heading to Jilib in a convoy of 15 Ethiopian tanks," Ahmednur Yasin told Reuters by telephone. "There are more forces heading to Buale and I am sure the fighting will start soon."
A Somali government source said: "All the terrorists are in Jilib and Kismayu."
One Islamic courts fighter, who asked not to be named, said: "We will fight the Ethiopian invaders. The jihad will not stop."
Parliament was expected to vote on Saturday to declare three months of martial law aimed at disarming thousands of men loyal to various clan chiefs and local militia leaders blamed for years of anarchy.
Gedi's government depends almost entirely on Addis Ababa for its military muscle, analysts say, and it was far from clear how it would maintain security without Ethiopian troops.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16