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Al-Shabab retakes south Somalia town
Thu, 17 Mar 2011 18:50:00 GMT
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Hundreds of newly trained al-Shabab fighters perform military exercises in the Lafofe area, some 18 Kilometers (11 miles) south of Mogadishu, on February 17, 2011.
Al-Shabab fighters have recaptured a frontier town in southern Somalia from the government-allied Ahlu Sunna Waljama'a militiamen.

Members of the anti-government al-Shabab group took control of the town of Diff, located on the border with Kenya, on Thursday without much resistance from Ahlu Sunna Waljama'a fighters, a Press TV correspondent reported.

Al-Shabab had controlled the southern Somali town since January 2009. However, it fell under Ahlu Sunna Waljama's control last week.

Somalia has not had a functioning government since 1991, when warlords overthrew former dictator Mohamed Siad Barre.

Over the past two decades, up to one million people have been killed in Somalia in the fighting between rival factions and also due to famine and disease.

There are more than 1.4 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Somalia, with over 300,000 of them sheltering in Mogadishu alone.

Most of the displaced live in poor and degrading conditions on makeshift sites in southern and central Somalia, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

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