Amisom forces uncover buried explosives

Monday December 19 2011

By Abdulkadir Khalif

African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) troops have seized explosive devices buried in parts of Mogadishu, officials have said.

Major General Fred Mugisha, the force commander of the Amisom, said last week that the peacekeepers have recently uncovered up to 15 landmines buried in parts of Mogadishu. He cited al-Shabaab, the radical Islamist group opposing the Transitional Federal Government, as being behind the explosives.

“The devices were meant to harm the public,” said Maj. Gen. Mugisha. He urged the public to continue working with the armed forces.

“We don’t want to know the name of who is reporting or the person planting the bomb,” said the commander. “What is important is the position, where the bomb is,” he added, hinting that anonymity is the most cooperative method of communication on the sensitive subject.

He also advised the ordinary citizens to stay away from areas suspected to containing explosives. Gen. Mugisha rejected the notion that the militants deserting al-Shabaab and joining the government were responsible for recent wave of bombings in Mogadishu. He stated that al-Shabaab operatives from Lower Shabelle region, south of Mogadishu, were responsible for the bombings.

“Amisom is determined to strive to abort the different tactics used by al-Shabaab,” said the commander who lamented the deadly suicide bombing around Km4 Area, targeting ministries and students in October and the landmine explosions that killed women cleaners in South Mogadishu.