Wed Aug 22, 2018 | 04:40
Somali clashes leave 82 AU troops dead
Fri, 04 Mar 2011 19:10:26 GMT
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Al-Shabab fighters display the bodies of two peacekeepers from the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM) killed during clashes in Mogadishu, February 24, 2011.
Somali officials say over 80 African Union (AU) peace keeping troops have been killed by anti-government forces in the country's troubled capital, Mogadishu.

Government sources have confirmed the deaths of as many as 82 soldiers of the African Union Mission for Somalia (AMISOM) in clashes with al-Shabab fighters over the past two weeks, a Press TV correspondent reported on Friday.

At least 190 other AMISOM troops have also sustained serious injuries in the clashes and have been flown to neighboring Djibouti for treatment, said the officials speaking on condition of anonymity.

A Somali military colonel accused the AMISOM spokesman Major Ba-Hoku Barigye of underestimating the AU death toll in Somalia.

Somalia has been in a state of chaos in the absence of a functioning government since 1991, when warlords overthrew former dictator Mohamed Siad Barre. The Somali government has been struggling for years to restore security.

Nearly a million people have died due to relentless fighting between rival warlords, famine and disease.

There are more than 1.4 million internally displaced persons in Somalia, more than 300,000 of whom have taken refuge in Mogadishu alone.

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